(ZIZ News)– CARICOM Energy Week 2014, which is being observed this week, was officially launched on Sunday by Minister of Natural Resources and Environment on Nevis, Hon. Alexis Jeffers.
In an address, Minister Jeffers said this year’s theme of “Achieving Climate and Economic Resilience through Sustainable Energy” is appropriate as climate change affects the small islands of the region.
“Those of us in the Small Island Developing States of the Caribbean are especially vulnerable and it therefore calls for an urgent and proactive response in order to secure generations to come. That is why when we reflect on the theme for this year’s CARICOM Energy Week 2014, we must conclude that it is most appropriate and timely. If we do not adapt, adjust and respond to these realities, then our economies will suffer and there will be an increase in the poverty levels in these small vulnerable economies,” he said.
According to Minister Jeffers, the Nevis Island Administration is working to diversify its energy portfolio for the benefit of citizens.
“It has been shown worldwide, that there is a link between economic growth and the pursuit of renewable and sustainable energy investments and development. That is why the Nevis Island Administration, through the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, has taken bold and deliberate steps to establish the right energy mix, so as to diversify its energy portfolio,” he explained adding that such steps will “ultimately will bring relief to the residents and people of Nevis, in terms of making electricity cost more affordable while at the same time, reduce our emission of greenhouse gases and secure a reliable supply of energy.”
“The areas of focus for the NIA will bring macroeconomic benefits such as increased employment and income as well as foreign direct investment. Moreover, these areas will ensure sustainable energy development, since we are using natural resources which are available in abundance and cannot be depleted if harnessed properly,” Minister Jeffers stated.
The activities for CARICOM Energy Week 2014 will include a photograph competition, an online quiz, an exhibition in the War Memorial Square in Charlestown and an essay competition at the primary and secondary school levels.