Jamaica is a renewable energy leader in the Caribbean

Wigton WInd Farm, Jamaica. Image: via Panoramio

The Jamaica Gleaner reports on Jamaica’s progress towards its 2030 renewable energy goals:

Jamaica is now developing its renewable-energy potential at a leading pace among its Caribbean neighbours with support from private investment, says David Delaire, managing director, Germany-based MPC Capital.

This is demonstrated by its 170 megawatts of installed generating capacity and rapidly developing solar plants, he stated. The expansion under way in Jamaica is based on the country’s appealing market conditions; robust regulatory framework, Government’s support for the development, and a utility company that is willing to work with private power producers.

In 2015, CARICOM states agreed on a framework in which they outlined where each member state needed to have a certain amount of renewable energy installed by 2030,” he said, pointing out “Jamaica outlined its National Energy Policy 2009-2030, thus carving out a role for the development of renewable energy in the country’s future.

“You have taken the time to outline an integrated resource plan,” the engineer stated. “In terms of renewable energy, what I find is more appreciated by investors such as ourselves is that we would like to know that the Government is behind rules.”

The electricity sector development plan has involved regulators, the Government, JPSCo and the private sector, Delaire pointed out, declaring that “Jamaica has done an exceptional job.”

Looking at Caribbean counterparts, he said that Antigua has “a couple of projects installed or in development”, but others, such as Guyana, Barbados, and the British Virgin Islands, were all “a bit behind in terms of what they need to be doing”.

Earlier this year, Jamaica increased its 2030 renewable energy target from 30% to 50%:

“We are working even harder to a more ambitious target to reach 50% of our electricity generation being from renewables by 2030. Pushing our energy generation to be 50-50 by 2030; fossil fuels and renewables is in our national security interest, in our survival interest,” declared Prime Minister Holness.

He said at present pace the previous target of 30% could be achieved by 2020, if the country remains on track in diversifying its energy use.

Previously on Green Antilles: Finance deals signed for new solar power plant in Jamaica and Five renewable energy projects to watch in the Caribbean.

[Image: via Panoramio]

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