High hopes

Govt projects over $3 billion in savings as a result of new energy policy

Government is projecting savings of over $3 billion over the next two decades under the new Barbados National Energy Policy 2017–2037.

The use of consumption fuel by vehicles is also to be slashed by about half from 11,000 barrels per day to 5,400 barrels per day, with the country scheduled to realize a 75 per cent reduction in the use of fossil fuel-based energy over the next 20 years, and an equal percentage increase in renewable energy usage.

Earlier this week, energy officials outlined the key objectives of the new policy, which is scheduled to go before Parliament soon for approval.

Last year Government spent just over US$300 million or about seven per cent of the country’s gross domestic product on the importation of fuel, down from the US$450 million in 2015.

Acting Chief Project Analyst in the Division of Energy Bryan Haynes said the policy should result in stability of local energy prices, stronger regulation and greater reliability, and energy security and affordability.

Based on the policy, by 2037 Barbados should be generating 20 per cent of its energy from natural gas; 30 per cent from biomass; 20 per cent from wind; 15 per cent from solar and 15 per cent from bio-fuels.

Haynes said the new framework should result in at least a 22 per cent saving in terms of electricity consumption.

“In order to achieve those targets and mix we would have to reduce our heavy fuel consumption significantly and relatively quickly. In order for this to happen as mentioned earlier, transportation would have to be a significant component. That relates to making sure that at the end of the day our daily fuel consumption would be reduced from 11,000 barrels to just around 5,400 barrels per day, that is fuel not energy,” explained Haynes.

Minister responsible for Energy Senator Darcy Boyce said once the implementation gets underway it should also result in the creation of new job opportunities.

“This vision is guided by a multi-criteria approach to development which requires the viable application of resources within the context of financial, economic, environmental, social and technological parameters. In other words, we got to be environmentally friendly. They have got to be able to pay their way and it has to have a proper system of governance and regulation. We have got to also ensure that it reaches throughout the whole country,” he said.

Acknowledging that the implementation of the measures outlined in the policy would take some time, Boyce said residents should also give it time to show measureable results.

The new policy is expected to be accessible online within a matter of weeks.

Data, which was available for up to 2010, showed that Barbados’ energy distribution consisted of 41 per cent, power generation; ten per cent, commercial/public; eight per cent, residential; nine per cent, industrial; 27 per cent, transportation and five per cent, other.

9 Responses to High hopes

  1. Leroy November 23, 2017 at 2:08 am

    These goals are not practical and a pipe dream unless very bold steps are taken and we know this legislation like all others will be wishy washy because they wont want to upset bl&p or sol.

    One question, will their be transport board busses running on natural gas or electric? How about conscessions for zr and mini vans to convert or import fuel cell vehicles? How about incentives to businesses to produce their own electricity from solar and wind? Does it take into account that the amount of vehicles will conti ue to rise unless we have a proper public transport system?
    Leaving more cars on our roads blocked in traffic burning more fuel and less hours at work.
    Just changing from incandescent to led wont do the trick.

    • tedd November 23, 2017 at 1:01 pm

      the use of natural gas is nonsense. 1st natural gas is a fossil fuel that they are talking of reducing. Barbados has a shortage of natural gas. remember the outages. leave natural gas to the cooks. we already import natural gas and have cancelled the pipeline to bring it in from Trinidad.

      biodiesel made from recycled cooking oil was not mentioned. there is an abundance of used cooking oil being created by the fast food places. maybe the busses should be modified to use them.

      solar and wind is good as I am sure we have an abundance of hot sun around here. this is where we need to focus.

      electric vehicles only are a benefit if they are being charged from electricity being produced from non fossil fuels.

      I am a strong supporter of getting away from imported fuel. but we must have government subsidies and tax relief to get things started, just like what happened with the solar water heaters which have now become the default choice of households with water heaters. very few still have electric or gas geysers.

      • tedd November 23, 2017 at 1:03 pm

        maybe also reducing the taxes on electric vehicles and solar panels to make them competitive with the regular motor cars

  2. Tony Webster November 23, 2017 at 5:32 am

    “Once the implementation gets underway”…Gentlemen…people now flying at high flight levels now looking to pack their parachutes to be ready for bailing out of a crIppled
    aircraft…and you talking like this?. Really?

  3. Andrew Simpson November 23, 2017 at 6:04 am

    Simple net metering arrangements would financially empower the greatest number of Barbadian households and small businesses to be energy secure and energy smart but it is not even on the cards. I often wonder whether it’s not all about maintaining government officials and little else.

  4. David Hall November 23, 2017 at 6:22 am

    Tired of this government pipes dreams especially at an election time when the government after 10 years has nothing to show. They need to bring proof that simpar projects under similar circumstances have met these targets. They also need to show the legislative framework which they have or will put in place to achieve this.

  5. Alex Alleyne November 23, 2017 at 6:48 am


  6. Greengiant November 23, 2017 at 9:10 am

    A change of government will create a policy change, a personnel change, a change of contractors, and another delay. More excuses why we’ll be still paying through our teeth for energy a decade from now.

  7. milli watt November 23, 2017 at 10:59 am



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