Prime Minister Freundel Stuart (right) in conversation with local businessman James Husbands (left), at the Sustainable Energy for All (SEFA) Conference at Hilton Barbados. (C. Pitt/BGIS)??

Barbados will soon have a National Sustainable Energy Policy to guide policy initiatives and the development of an operational framework to generate incentives that would result in substantial energy savings for the island.

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart made this announcement yesterday, during the opening ceremony of the Sustainable Energy for All (SEFA) Conference at Hilton Barbados.

He told the large gathering of local and overseas energy experts that the policy, slated to be completed in July, would assist government in reducing the cumulative costs of oil imports over a 20-year period from US $2.64 billion to US $1.97 billion.

Mr. Stuart added: "Based on the above, Barbados can, therefore, commit in the context of the Draft Barbados Declaration, to the incorporation by the year 2030, of 29 per cent of renewable energy in the energy mix and the reduction of electricity consumption through energy measures by 22 per cent."

The Prime Minister further stated: "For us, however, merely setting goals is not enough.?? We feel that specific commitments should be made accompanied by visible efforts to meet these commitments, if we are to reach the goal of sustainable energy for all."?? ??????

Mr. Stuart said that during the upcoming Rio +20 meeting in Brazil, support must be obtained for the targets and commitments of the SEFA initiative, and contribute to "deliberations on the potential establishment of Sustainable Development Goals and related global monitoring mechanisms".

The Prime Minister also alluded to the involvement of the private sector and civil society in the utilisation of the vast renewable energy resources in Small Islands Developing States (SIDS).

"For this reason, I heartily commend the creation of the SIDS DOCK non-profit international organisation to facilitate the development of a sustainable energy sector and to provide the foundation for low carbon economic growth and adaptation to climate change," Mr. Stuart underlined.


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