World Bank, UNDP, Denmark and AOSIS to Support Renewable Energy in SIDS

8 December 2010: The Government of Denmark, the World Bank and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) to support island countries in scaling up their renewable energy efforts and shift to greater energy efficiency.

Because of their size and remoteness, most small island developing States (SIDS) are heavily dependent on imported petroleum for their energy needs. Some countries spend an estimated 25-50% of their GDP on imported oil, which leads to very high domestic electricity costs. Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator, stated that “Reducing fossil fuel consumption is a ‘win-win' for SIDS,” explaining that it reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, while improving energy security and "freeing up national spending for investment in climate-resilient development.”

The Government of Denmark has pledged 80 million Danish kroner (US$14.5 million) to kick off the initiative, known as SIDS DOCK, which is expected to help island States from the Africa, Caribbean, and Pacific Island regions transition to low-emission, climate-resilient development paths. The World Bank and the UNDP will facilitate the trust fund that will be established from the MOU. [World Bank Press Release]