Renewable Energy Caribbean is one year old today and to celebrate we are showcasing the top renewable energy stories in the region from 2014. Thank you to all our subscribers. We have many features planned for this year so be sure to follow our updates.
Top 5 Stories in 2014:
It has been an exciting year for alternative, clean energy in the Caribbean. The trends all point to energy being the next investment frontier for Latin America and the Caribbean. Despite the image of being energy poor, Caribbean islands are in fact energy rich, although there remain structural and financial barriers which need to be overcome.
The annual Climatescope Survey expanded this year with its 2014 report and revealed that the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Barbados remain the key investment hotspots in the region owing to a strong enabling environment and some impressive RE projects. In particular, Jamaica is pushing to move into pole position with plans to double its renewable energy capacity. Jamaica is also ranked the top country in the Caribbean for starting a business and 20th in the world.
Despite promising winds of change for renewable energy in the Caribbean, the region needs stronger support from government to facilitate the transition to alternative, clean energy and provide a more attractive investment environment. It has been proposed that the Caribbean needs a Marshall Plan for energy.
A new report from the International Labour Organisation highlighted the links between climate change and employment in the Caribbean. Climate change poses a serious threat to development, impacting jobs, incomes, public and private infrastructure, and health and productive sectors. This was echoed at the 3rd SIDS Conference in September, 2014, in which governments called for more formal and non-formal education and training, especially in the area of green job creation.
It is well-known that the eastern Caribbean has untapped potential for geothermal and this past year there were many promising developments in the sector.
- Two new solar farms planned for St Kitts and Nevis; in addition, to the new Eco-Park launched this year
- Restructuring PREPA in Puerto Rico
- Dominica geothermal moves into its next phase
- Progress of NEMO ocean thermal project in Martinique