Bahamas launches solarization programme

The Government of The Bahamas’ intention to launch “an ambitious, solarization programme” in The Bahamas over the next five years is expected to result in numerous benefits for The Bahamas as a Small Island Developing State (SIDS) as well as assist in slowing adverse effects of climate change which include more extreme weather patterns and rising sea levels.

Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert Alexander Minnis said the Government, through its Sustainable Nassau Project (in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank – IDB) will “better integrate Smart Technology” to ensure that Bahamians use less energy in public buildings, schools and for street lighting.

“As a low-lying nation chain, our development strategies must be smart and sustainable,” Prime Minister Minnis said. “Eighty per cent of the landmass in The Bahamas will be threatened by a one meter rise in the sea level.

“Even as we urge the larger nations of the world to reduce their enormous carbon footprint, and to help Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to mitigate the effects of Climate Change, we must play our part in developing sustainable energy,” Prime Minister Minnis added.

Bahamian and United Nations Officials say Climate Change is now affecting every country on every continent of the world, disrupting national economies and affecting lives, while increasing costs on global citizens, communities and countries.

UN Officials say greenhouse gas emissions from human activities are driving climate change. Those emissions continue to rise and are now at their highest levels in history. Without action, the world’s average surface temperature is projected to rise over the 21st century and is likely to surpass 3 degrees Celsius (or more than 37 degrees Fahrenheit) this century—with some areas of the world expected to warm even more. The poorest and most vulnerable people are being affected the most.

“Climate change is a global challenge that does not respect national borders,” UN Officials report. “Emissions anywhere, affect people everywhere. It is an issue that requires solutions that need to be coordinated at the international level and it requires international cooperation to help developing countries move toward a low-carbon economy.”

Officials say affordable, scalable solutions – such as renewable energy — are now available to enable countries to leapfrog to cleaner, more resilient economies. Renewable energy and a range of other measures that will reduce emissions and increase adaptation efforts are available options.

Prime Minister Minnis recently called on CARICOM Heads of Government (during the 38th Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community – CARICOM) to embrace the United Nations protocols on Climate Change because the livelihoods and existence of regional citizens demand that they do so.

“Our region is dependent upon the resources of the sea, the blessings of the Trade Winds, and year-round ambient temperatures,” Prime Minister Minnis said. “Accordingly, we must continue to embrace the UN Climate protocols because our livelihoods and existence demand regional and global action to address Climate Change generally, and threats such as rising sea levels, depleted fish stocks, and the frequency and intensity of hurricanes.

“We should be diligent in putting in action, plans for renewable energy and energy efficiency from the sun, wind, the oceans, rivers and lakes,” Dr. Minnis added.


Source: Matt Maura, The Bahamas Weekly

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