Through its Caribbean Clean Energy Programme (CARCEP), USAID has implemented policies and incentives to help Caribbean nations to become more energy efficient.[quote] The policies and incentives are also aimed at promoting low emission growth and greater public-private sector investment in clean energy development.
The USAID is a United States Agency for International Development is the United States Government agency which is primarily responsible for administering civilian foreign aid.
Over 40 representatives and experts from the Caribbean energy sector met in Barbados for a CARCEP Regional Smart Grid Working Group Forum, which provided the platform for collaboration on strategies to transition power grids in the region to smart grids. [Smart meters Caribbean: Grand Cayman halfway through 27K rollout]
Those present included sector specialists from the Barbados Energy Division, the Caribbean Electric Utility Services Corporation (CARILEC), the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), and various electric utility companies, regulators, financiers, international donor organisations, and equipment suppliers.
Addressing the forum, USAID Mission Director Christopher Cushing said: “We are also witnessing tremendous commitment globally to address this challenge.
Clean energy development
According to the St. Lucia Times, many countries in the Caribbean have ambitious goals for the percentage of renewable energy in the electricity sector. At the 41st Special Meeting of the Commission on Trade and Economic Development, the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) adopted a target of 47 per cent renewable energy by 2027.
Last year, US president Barrack Obama met with regional leaders from the Caribbean Community to discuss energy security, reduction of energy costs and addressing climate change.
Furthermore, the US launched a US$20 million financing facility for the Caribbean and Central America to encourage investment in clean energy projects.
The US Department of Energy (DoE) and Jamaica’s Ministry of Science, Technology, Energy, and Mining also signed a statement of intent to collaborate in the areas such as energy conservation and efficiency, energy infrastructure, microgrids and energy storage, fuel diversification and energy policy. [Jamaica electricity grid: Smart meters part of US$40m upgrade]
Cushing added: “At Paris COP 21, commitments given by countries will result in renewables making up 78 percent of new power generation investment by 2030. Initiatives like the USAID Caribbean Clean Energy Programme can play an important role if we want to meet these goals.”
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