Senator Darcy Boyce, Minister with responsibility for the Division of Energy, has disclosed that Government???s targets in relation to its sustainable energy initiatives will be reached much sooner than initially projected.
The two primary targets, which form part of the medium-term economic development strategy, are for about 29 per cent of all electricity produced in Barbados to be generated from renewable energy resources; and for a decrease in electricity consumption by 22 per cent.
According to Senator Boyce, by 2029, this proposed energy mix would result in a cut of total electricity cost by US$283.5 million, and a reduction of 4.5 million tonnes in carbon dioxide emissions.
Senator Boyce was speaking last Thursday at the opening session of the Caribbean Sustainable Energy Forum at the Caribbean Development Bank, Wildey, St. Michael.
He outlined several of the projects that Government is involved in to achieve its goals, including equipping 20 Government buildings with solar photovoltaic systems by March next year to generate solar electricity. He said that systems are already in place at two schools and the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus.
Senator Boyce further revealed: ???Cabinet has already approved the framework of entering into strategic partnerships with energy service companies who wish to lease the space of Government-owned buildings for the generation of electricity from these buildings and the sale of the excess electricity to the grid.???
He said Government will shortly consider a similar framework for energy efficiency improvements to be done by the private sector and paid for from the savings in electricity usage.
???These are areas ripe for investment, and I wish to encourage the private sector to place itself in a position to benefit from the exciting prospects in this area, especially as energy service companies,??? the Energy Minister said.