The government of The Bahamas signed a contract agreement with the Caribbean Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (CCREEE) that will reaffirm its BluePrint for Change goal of “a minimum reliance on renewable energy of 30 percent by 2030.”
The Integrated Resource and Resilience Plan (IRRP), funded by the Inter-American Development Bank as a part of its renewable energy initiative, is a five-year energy use variation plan for The Bahamas.
The contract signing took place on August 22, 2023 at the Ministry of Finance, and, according to CEO at Bahamas Power and Light, Shevonn Cambridge, the incorporation of the plan seeks to allow for more efficiency throughout the entire Bahamas.
“This plan is not only just for New Providence, but it also faces how we as a utility evolve throughout The Bahamas in the integration of renewables in the most efficient and effective manner,” he said.
The Caribbean Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (CCREEE) is an institution established by CARICOM in 2018 to assist member states in developing and streamlining energy efficiency and renewable energy policies, programs, and frameworks for sustainability.
The implementation and revitalization of various programs like the IRRP have proven efficient in various member states such as Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad, and Antigua and once done correctly, the effects will prove beneficial to The Bahamas, according to Executive Director for CCREEE, Gary Jackson.
“Everybody is at different stages at this point and time, but the path that The Bahamas is taking now is the right path and we look forward to supporting that way forward,” he said.
Jackson also said the IRRP is essential for long-term advancement and recovery in the face of natural disasters.
“You may not be resilient in the way that you will be able to reduce the impact, but you will be able to rebound from the impact in a fast recovery time, in a faster way based on the multiplicity of activities that you will have in this plan,” he said.
The contract signing came as a precursor to a series of meetings to be held in New Providence and Grand Bahama to discuss the Integrated Resource and Resilience Plan for suitability and resilience for the country.
Representatives from The Ministry of Finance, Bahamas Power and Light (BPL), Caribbean Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (CCREEE), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA), and the University of The Bahamas met on August 22, 2023 and will have various meetings throughout the week.