Kota Marudu Member of Parliament

IRENA CAN PLAY ROLE TO ENSURE WEST FULFILS PROMISE OF ASSISTANCE

ABU DHABI: Malaysia wants the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) to play a role to ensure the West keep their promise to provide assistance and support for developing countries to reduce climate change.

Minister of Energy, Green Technology and Water Datuk Seri Panglima Dr Maximus Ongkili stressed that there was a need to follow through the implementation of the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) for each country to reduce greenhouse gases (GHG).

 

“The West need to provide the necessary support to enable every country to implement their INDCs. The INDCs cannot be converted into goals and policies to be adopted by the respective countries without this assistance,” he said, adding that funding was always a problem for developing countries to enhance renewable energy adoption so as to reduce carbon emissions.

 

Speaking at the two-day Ministerial Roundtable Meeting of the 6th session of the IRENA assembly that ended on Jan. 17, he said Malaysia regretted that the West, led by the United States, had not fulfilled their promise.

 

The INDCs are voluntary actions published by all countries that signed the UN Framework on Climate Change (UNFCC) as a lead up to the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris (COP21).

 

Dr Maximus participated in the Ministerial sessions on “After COP21: Concerted Action Towards Renewable Energy Deployment” and session on “After COP21: Financing Renewable Energy – Scaling Up Investment”.

Sharing Malaysia’s experience, he said it had set “a bold goal” to reduce GHG emissions intensity of the GDP by 45% by 2030 compared to the 2005 levels.

 

“Malaysia has so far achieved 33% reduction. Under our target, 35% is supposed to be achieved on an unconditional basis and the other 10% reduction is conditional upon receipt of climate finance, technology transfer and capacity building assistance,” he said.

 

Nevertheless, he pointed out that Malaysia’s success story was not without challenges with finance being the main challenge. “This highlights why climate change policy formulation and policy drivers need political commitment to succeed,” he said.

 

Dr. Maximus said 10 years ago when the UNFCC was very active on climate change issues, many developing countries were sceptical and approached climate change issues as a Western conspiracy.

 

“But by COP15, Malaysia had already acknowledged that climate change was real and set its carbon emission targets. Since then, we put in place necessary instruments to reduce climate change, in order to ensure our development is sustainable,” he said.

 

These include the National Biofuel Policy (2006), National Renewable Energy Policy (2010), the Renewable Energy Act and Sustainable Energy Development Authority Act in 2011, while the Feed-in Tariff mechanism was introduced in 2011. 

 

“With these policies and measures, renewable energy in Malaysia now makes up 24% in total installed capacity and comprises 10.1% of our energy mix, including hydro,” Dr Maximus added.

 

Malaysia also committed to provide RM4.6bil for the Green Technology Financing Scheme for the duration of 2010 to 2017. Under this scheme, the Government subsidises two percent of the total interest rate and provides a guarantee of 60% on the financing amount via Credit Guarantee Corporation Malaysia Bhd, with the remaining 40% borne by participating financial institutions.

 

“In the long run, we want the private sector to drive the renewable energy initiatives and move towards decarbonised energy in the long term,” he said.  

 

Dr Maximus also informed the meeting that Malaysia’s latest initiatives include embarking on Net Energy Metering and developing Large Scale Solar PV with a set target of 250MW annually for the next four years.

 

The Minister and his delegation comprising officials from the ministry, Sustainable Energy Development Authority (SEDA) and the Energy Commission subsequently attended the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week and participated in the World Future Energy Summit 2016 that ends Wednesday (Jan 20).