Newcrest Mining Limited and the National Energy Authority (NEA) have formalized their collaboration by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at identifying, developing, implementing, and financing potential renewable energy initiatives in selected locations across Papua New Guinea (PNG). The signing ceremony, which marked a significant milestone in the extractive industry, took place on September 13th, 2023, at the Hilton Hotel in Port Moresby during the Petroleum & Energy Conference.
National Energy Authority (NEA) Managing Director, Ronald Meketa, underscored the groundbreaking nature of this MOU, stating, "This MOU is a first for the extractive industry, leading the way for other capital-intensive operators, and/or for net emitters operating in PNG, to align their operations with the government vision to address the country’s lack of electricity coverage by developing renewable energy projects throughout the country at the same time achieving their own target in its transitioning to become a net-zero emitter by 2050."
Meketa further elaborated on the significance of this collaboration, saying, "As the custodian of the National Energy Policy 2017-2027 target to provide electricity to 70 per cent of households in the country by 2030 by harnessing renewable energy sources, the MOU sets out the framework for closer cooperation and partnership with the Newcrest Mining Limited to deliver strategically placed development of renewable energy projects throughout the country."
He praised Newcrest Mining Limited's commitment to the cause and added, "From the MOU, relevant parties will enter into separate implementation Agreements to operationalize the areas of cooperation stated therein."
Newcrest Mining Limited has already begun mobilization of a dedication to develop a technological roadmap towards decarbonization, including their supply chain, as a critical part of building a business for the future.
Newcrest Mining's intervention into the country’s energy space also reflects its appreciation of the National Government’s vision to address the country’s lack of electricity coverage to improve the socio-economic development of PNG.
Both the National Energy Authority and Newcrest Mining Limited have acknowledged there are options for hybrid power systems that will improve current power system and establish new power generation systems for areas where there is lack or unreliable power supply.
Mr. Meketa said the effort by the NEA and Newcrest is also consistent with the global effort in addressing climate change and greenhouse effect by providing greener and friendlier energy for the government, businesses, civic societies, and the people of the country.