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CI Times Weekly | Current Issue 262 | 04 August 2008

Wichman on renewable energy

While the public met at Club Raro on Wednesday evening to discuss renewable energy sources, Tom Wichman was winging his way to the African State of Ghana to attend a special meeting of the “Expert Group on Technology Transfer” where renewable energy will be discussed. For several years now Wichman has been a member of this influential group and has attended numerous meetings around the world.
On Monday evening the Herald caught up with Wichman who has recently returned from a meeting of the Group held in Bonn, Germany.
I asked Wichman why Ghana? He said countries offer to host such meetings because there are economic spin offs. There will also be a Bio-diversity meeting in Ghana at the same venue said Wichman. It can also be an opportunity for the host country to be offered aid for special projects.
Following this meeting, Wichman said the Group’s final meeting for the year will be held in Dublin, Ireland.
In Ghana the group plan to discuss technology transfer, technology needs, food security technology and health technologies. The meeting will last 4-5 days said Wichman.
Wichman said the work of the Group is in two main areas- identifying and recommending technologies for adaptation to climate change and identifying and recommending technologies for mitigation of the effects of climate change.
It is up to various nations to look at their situations and complete a technology needs assessment. Training of assessors can be undertaken also. Wichman said Nuie was one of the first countries to complete their assessment. Funds are available for projects once assessments have been completed.
Adaptation technologies benefit individuals said Wichman and include items such as water tanks. These technologies do not reduce harmful emissions said Wichman. Mitigation technologies such as wind and solar power help to reduce emissions because they reduce reliance on fossil fuels.
On the subject of wind power generators, Wichman does not believe this is a viable economic option for Rarotonga. Not only would it be costly, but he believes wind power will only provide 20-30 per cent of our needs. The problem said Wichman is that larger propellers need a constant wind speed of 5m per second or more to turn the propellers at a sufficient speed to generate the power required. While the Tupapa hill site is the most ideal, he said there is insufficient room for a large number of wind generators.
Wichman said a rule of thumb is that wind generators are ideal for countries more than 22 degrees from the equator as the wind is more constant and stronger. He said his five years of research showed that there were only several times a year where the wind strength got up to and over 5m per second. Tahiti which had a wind farm, but which like Rarotonga, was within 22 degrees of the equator, discontinued and dismantled their wind generation system.
Small wind generators on people’s homes connected directly to the national grid and producing around 10 kilowatts of power would be a viable alternative said Wichman.
A household would use about 2 kilowatts.
Solar power would be a better alternative said Wichman to large wind generators.
Commenting on the situation in Pukapuka, Wichman said the solar power system there should be upgraded by having a central system rather than panels on each home. There should be one large battery bank to convert the power from DC to AC so all homes can have 240v AC. If sunlight was obscured during bad weather like a cyclone, the battery bank would give 3-5 days of reserve power then a standby generator run on bio-fuel such as coconut oil can be used.
Wichman says coconut oil is much underrated and unexploited in the Cook Islands for its economic potential. Standard coconut oil is fetching around $30 a litre said Wichman and better refined oil is fetching up to $50 a litre. The coconut left over from the process also has economic potential he said. Largely fat free it makes excellent pig feed. Roasted, it makes a sweet, protein rich dietary supplement. Coconut oil can also be taken as a dietary supplement drink said Wichman.

Headlines : Times 262 04 August 2008
-Approvals by Environment Authority may be illegal
- Rosie – CISNOC’S new Secretary General
- The PDL takeover - what can we expect?
- Research Association to hold second Conference
- The power of positive thinking

Headlines : Times 261 28 July 2008
- Incomplete EIA raises questions
- Rasmussen nominated for top Forum job
- Elikana appointed Solicitor General
- Wichman on renewable energy
- Big crowd at energy meeting

Headlines : Times 260 21 July 2008
- Sea cruises getting the ships to tie up
- Rarotonga to host Trade meeting
- Former ADB head passes away
- Teaching Te Reo Maori in Secondary Schools
- Extensive coverage of Olympics on CITV

Headlines : Times 256 23 June 2008
- Uncertain times ahead
- The Budget: Where the money comes from
- Sunday flights a concern to Aitutaki residents
- Consultant to advise on growing the offshore finance industry
- Community workshops on climate change issues

Headlines : Times 255 16 June 2008
- Cabinet meet to discuss Ui Ariki, Digicel
- No Jail time for Areai
- Proclamation by the Ui Ariki
- Dinner for the Woman of the Month
- Queens in camp for new launch

Headlines : Times 254 09 June 2008
- PM wraps up in Rome – heads for home
- Report card on Takitumu Lagoon Day
- Aere ra, Krystina
- Former boxers invited to provide support
- $47 million to upgrade water supply

Headlines : Times 253 02 June 2008
- Saving Aitutaki
- Tepaki Group committed to Maeva Nui sponsorship
- Takitumu Lagoon Day will show what you can do to help
- Tropikana-a sweet inspiration
- Landowner opposes Taakoka Villas application for reinstatement

Headlines : Times 250 12 May 2008
- High Court ruling will decide if Company can compete with Telecom
- HTTC students get a taste for the good life
- Cook Islands Community Services of Victoria Incorporated launched in Australia
- Lagoon Field Day on 6 June 2008
- 500 days to the Pacific Mini Games

Headlines : Times 249 05 May 2008
- ‘Mr Bankruptcy’ seeks new partners
- The contracting out option
- Cook Islands to feature on TVNZ
- Candles in the wind
- Airport commercial spaces the other side of the story
- Aitutaki wedding for Helen Henry and Prof John Hay

Headlines : Times 239 25 February 2008
- Mitiaro identity recovers well
- Government team developing website
- Business Leaders told profits are green
- Award dinner for Woman of the Month for February
- After 5 Business Talk at Club Bana

Headlines : Times 234 21 January 2008
- “It’s not a nice day.” –Tapi Taio
- Freak storm takes Raro by surprise, causes havoc
DPM seeks inclusion in Alcatel cable network with Samoa and other Pacific nations
- Search on for promising young boxers
- Women’s activist, Lynnsay Francis on brief visit home
- SENZ education founders not sitting on their laurels

Headlines : Times 232 24 December 2007
- Response by DPM to ADB loan upgrade reveals concerns
- Tumutevarovaro Games declared a resounding success
- Italian Assists Cook Islands Climate Change Agenda
- Concept for new Te Aponga logo decided
- The woes of Pacific Engineering Standards!
- Koutu Nui visit to First Nations in Canada

Headlines : Times 231 17 December 2007
- Takitumu Basketball Gold contenders disqualified over wrong colour shorts
- Political reform: are we taking the right approach?
- Award of Contract for the Rehabilitation of Avatiu Harbour Marina
- The new face at the helm of Cook Islands Nursing
- Christmas presents from the Indian community to Creative Centre
- Former agriculture research station in Totokoitu under dispute

Headlines : Times 230 10 December 2007
- A travesty of personalities!
- Maine Tiare girls at Competition Finale at Auditorium
- What is happening at the Punanga Nui?
- Cook Islands World AIDS Day 2007
- We still owe $54.8 million
- Boxing: Club competition set for 18 December
- Youngsters urged to take up boxing
- A Cook Island experience in China Final

Headlines : Times 230 10 December 2007
- A travesty of personalities!
- Maine Tiare girls at Competition Finale at Auditorium
- What is happening at the Punanga Nui?
- Cook Islands World AIDS Day 2007
- We still owe $54.8 million
- Boxing: Club competition set for 18 December
- Youngsters urged to take up boxing
- A Cook Island experience in China Final

Headlines : Times 229 03 December 2007
- Over $50,000 raised for Hosking family
- Industry ushers in new media council
- USP Pro Vice Chancellor upbeat on proposed International Campus in Totokoitu
- Forever young – the new 60s social club
- Audit Office reports busy year
- Appeal in land partition case – Privy Council only recourse after Court of Appeal decision?

Headlines : Times 228 26 November 2007
- $3,500 super nest egg disappears
- Finance Secretary continues to comment on indoor sports complex
- Manganese fever, the new gold rush
- Cook Islands given tourism destination rating of 69
- Tepaki Group host netball team
- A Cook Island experience in China Part II
- Te Mire Tarai Vaka parade

Headlines : Times 224 29 October 2007
- Asbestos to go to watery grave
- CISNOC President thankful that decision on Sports Stadium made
- Cooks NGO to commit to conference goals
- Cost of bread increases as of November 4th
- Leaders call for immediate action to protect region’s fisheries
- Rarotonga scooter club
- CICC celebrate Gospel Day with Nuku Religious Pageants
- Letter to the Editor: Health Ministry recruitment process
- Boxing Association begins promotion
- Auckland East Win Roller Mills
- Party to celebrate opening of new Ocean & Earth store at Turtles
- Oasis Hydroponics set to expand

Headlines : Times 223 22 October 2007
- Fiji, RAMSI, Pacific Plan main issues for PM at Leaders meeting in Tonga
- Takuvaine bridges in need of attention
- Man remanded back in custody
- Clemency celebrates her Masters in Health Practice & Nursing
- Commemoration of Te Rua-o-Te-Tonga Meeting House
- Ten minutes with Krystina Kauvai
- Blue Light Day at Te Atukura ready for Saturday night
- Koutu Nui to attend Climate Change meeting
- Days away from the biggest Conservation Conference for the Pacific
- Conservation Conference casts a wide information net

Headlines : Times 222 15 October 2007
- The CPU saga- Lets get back to the central issue-Cowan
- Delay in Police investigation into Rakahanga case
- Government has lost its focus-Marsters
- Pacific countries discuss Tuna Fishing Management Options for region
- Graduation ceremony for Midwifery Graduates at Public Health
- Public Health conduct October Tutaka to fight dengue
- 2008 Pacific Year of the Reef
- Experts help to develop policies

Headlines : Times 221 08 October 2007
- The CPU saga-the other side of the story
- British Crown may have a duty to Cook Islanders following 1950s A bomb tests
- Fast ferry a step closer
- Financial Secretary recommends upgrade of facilities for Mini Games
- AOG Conference in October
- Cook Islands to attend Lawn Bowls World Singles Champion of Champions
- Business Toolkits workshop opens new pathways for participants
- World Cup next for Sam Pera Jnr
- Good rankings for Sam Pera Jnr
- Power prices set to increase again

Headlines : Times 220 30 September 2007
- Manihiki medical emergency details
- Stop Press: 60kg of donated drugs dumped by Ministry
- Surveyor in beach saga explains his role
- Staff flee MFEM-why?
- Exactly what is our population and ethnic mix?
- Reception for French Naval Officers at Te Atukura
- French helicopter lands at Tereora
- Historical trip reunites families
- Woman of the Month Award
- A Letter Home
- SPREP works to combat invasive species

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