Nasheed installs solar panels

Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed climbed onto the roof of his official residence and installed solar electricity panels Thursday as part of a nationwide green drive, his office said.

Nasheed, 43, known as a stunt man in the fight against climate change, clambered onto the roof in the capital Male to install the solar panels.

It is the latest move by the president to highlight the Maldives’ vulnerability to rising sea levels.

In October last year he took his cabinet to the bottom of the Indian Ocean and staged the first underwater cabinet meeting.

He insists that he wants the country to be a showcase for renewable and clean energy and has vowed to make the tiny atoll nation of 1,192 low-lying coral islands carbon neutral by 2020.

“Solar power helps combat climate change, reduces our dependency on imported oil and most importantly cuts out electricity costs,” Nasheed’s office quoted him as saying after installing the solar panels.

The Maldives, an upmarket tourist destination, is one of the most vulnerable countries to the rising sea levels anticipated as a result of global warming.

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