JIS News

Development Minister, Dr. Paul Robertson, said that the issue of renewable energies has become increasingly urgent, given the sharp increases in the price of oil in recent months and the negative impact this has had on inflation.
Renewable energies include all energy sources and energy carriers, which are inexhaustible, and include the radiation of the sun, wind, waterpower, biomass and biogas.
Dr. Robertson, who was speaking at the official launch of the publication ‘Renewable Energies Potential in Jamaica’ and a panel discussion on its practical application today (Dec.16) at the Hilton Kingston hotel, said that Jamaica should aggressively pursue investment in renewable energies as the benefits to be derived in the medium to long-term would be of strategic economic importance.
“Any significant reduction in our energy bill is likely to enhance our global competitiveness. It is trite knowledge that there is a direct correlation between the cost of energy and economic competitiveness,” he stated.
The publication of the report, he said, formed part of the government’s efforts to promote renewable energies in Jamaica. The subsequent discussions, he informed, would focus on the opportunities as well as the obstacles to the wider use of renewable energies in Jamaica. “It will focus on practical solutions to overcoming these barriers, including the critical issue of public and private financing of renewables”.
Other benefits to be derived from the use of renewables, Dr. Robertson further pointed out, include the mitigation of global climate change, protection of the local and regional environments and the reduction of poverty as a result of enhanced competitiveness.
The Development Minister also took the opportunity to commend the Ministry of Commerce, Science and Technology, JAMPRO, United Nations Economic Commission of Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and all relevant stakeholders, for launching the publication, as well as looking more closely at the sources of renewable energies in Jamaica.
The publication emanated from a UNECLAC mission to Jamaica in 2004, when it was agreed that ECLAC would support the Jamaican government in the promotion and development of new and renewable forms of energy.