JIS News

Energy and Mining Minister, Hon. James Robertson, has said that a revamped draft National Energy Policy (NEP) is to be submitted to Cabinet.
Making his contribution to the 2009/10 Sectoral Debate at Gordon House on July 1, the Minister said that aspects of the Policy, which the country has been developing for the past five years, have changed including important aspects of the context within which it was originally developed.
“The Green Paper has been in Parliament since 2006, with no action taken. While the document focusses on measures to change our dependence on petroleum based energy, it addresses development strategies for alternate and renewable energy, and makes reference to the security of energy supply, and issues such as transportation, financing energy investments and petroleum taxation,” the Minister said.
He noted also that views garnered during extensive public consultations were not factored into the document and, as such, the Government felt that, in its current form, the policy did not sufficiently respond to the country’s energy development needs.
Consequently, a five-member team was established and mandated to revamp the draft energy policy, in light of current and projected global and local realities.
There are now seven areas of focus for the new policy: ensuring the security of Jamaica’s energy supply; developing a modernised energy infrastructure; encouraging Jamaicans to adopt conservation measures; inclusion of renewable energy sources in Jamaica’s energy mix; ensuring that Jamaica has a well-defined governance framework for the energy sector; the Government leading by example in energy conservation practices; and industries embracing the green economy and eco-efficiencies.
“There are many other areas where policies will have to be adopted and regulations developed and streamlined during the current legislative year. These will have to include for example, the Energy Conservation and Efficiency Policy, 2008 to 2022. This will require an addendum to the Energy Policy Green Paper, which was tabled in this House in November, 2008, and will be debated now,” Mr. Robertson explained.
The Energy and Mining Minister also announced that there will be a policy on Carbon Credits and Carbon Trading, as well as the development of a comprehensive electricity policy, which will include a renewable energy policy to foster and protect capital investments in renewable energy sources such as solar, water, wind and bio-fuels.

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