BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is providing US$34.5 million to fund renewable energy projects in the Caribbean that are built to withstand Category-5 hurricanes.
Climate Change and Environment Minister, Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, said the new funds build on the US$15 million of projects announced last year as part of the UAE-Caribbean Renewable Energy programme.
“The UAE is honored to have partnered with over 30 island countries since 2013 to implement renewable energy projects that reduce energy costs and create jobs,” he said, adding that the announcement on our partnership in the Caribbean builds on this legacy, simultaneously expanding our cooperation into climate resilience.
“Hurricanes Irma and Maria were a wake-up call for us We realised that the kind of projects we pursue had to change. As a result, we have implemented a resilience standard for all of our Caribbean projects that reflects the reality of climate vulnerability in the region.
Inspired by this precedent, we are now preparing for global roll-out of a resilience standard across over five billion US dollars of annual aid from the UAE.”
The funds will go towards seven new projects in Belize, the Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, St Kitts and Nevis, and St Lucia.
The Minister said that the UAE had also increased its allocation by 50 per cent to the rebuilding of the Barbuda power system, devastated by Hurricane Irma, in order to relocate and strengthen its main plant, where a solar and battery solution will be installed.
The announcement of the new funds were made during the second annual Bloomberg Global Business Forum, held on the sidelines of the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, last week. – CMC