Japan-CARICOM initiative to assess climate change impact on energy

(CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana) – The Japan-CARICOM Friendship and Cooperation Fund under the Private Sector Fund has approved a US$267,466 project which will ultimately allow energy planners in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to assess the impacts of climate change on the sector.

The project is titled: Establishment of Regional Capacity and Expertise for Addressing the Impacts of Future Climate Change on Energy Demand in CARICOM Countries. It will be managed by the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH) and piloted in Barbados, Dominica and Guyana. However, it is anticipated that the model will be applicable region-wide.

The initiative is being pursued to improve the inadequate framework and build expertise in the Community to address adequately the impacts of climate change and climate variability on future energy demand and supply.

The project identifies several CARICOM countries as developing energy policies to guide their economic development over the next 20-25 years, thereby calling for “well-defined approaches” to help energy planners account for the effects of climate change on the sector.

Against this backdrop, the project’s goal is to “enhance capacity and capability within the Caribbean Community to adequately inform national and regional decision-makers, policy specialists, and utility companies of the likely impacts of climate change and climate variability on the energy sector in the Caribbean.”

In this attempt to boost CARICOM’s capacity to forecast and prepare for the energy demands resulting from climate change, the project will utilise sector specialists who will work in tandem with the University of the West Indies (UWI) in research and analysis of the required data. This collaboration with UWI is expected to provide a cadre of future experts to bolster the Region’s capacity in this area.

A framework for evaluating the impacts of future climate change and climate variability on energy demand and supply, and the transfer of technology among local, regional and international organisations are among some other expected outcomes of this Japan-CARICOM Friendship and Cooperation Fund initiative.

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