The government of Antigua and Barbuda is committed to reducing electricity costs through renewables, as they are currently 100% reliant on imported fossil fuels. A new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) offers details on challenges and opportunities for the renewables sector in Antigua and Barbuda.
“Antigua and Barbuda, like many Caribbean island states, possesses abundant renewable energy resources, including considerable solar, wind, ocean and biomass potential,” said Honorable Asot A. Michael, Minister of Tourism, Economic Development, Investment and Energy for Antigua and Barbuda. “The challenges in harnessing these resources are significant and include financial, technological, environmental and other barriers. Assistance from IRENA has helped bring together stakeholders from a range of sectors to discuss the challenges and opportunities of accelerating renewable energy development.”
This Renewables Readiness Assessment (RRA) recommends a study forming the first milestone of a roadmap towards the goal of 75% grid-based renewables capacity by 2025. The proposed recommendations outlined below are the first building blocks towards a shift to renewable energy in Antigua and Barbuda.
1. Devise an action plan to scale up renewable energy deployment.
2. Review and rationalise the policy and tariff structure for grid interconnection with distributed renewables.
3. Undertake a comprehensive public awareness and engagement programme aimed at all levels of society.
4. Develop a national strategy for bioenergy and waste management development.
5. Establish an independent energy commission with appropriate authority to regulate the electricity supply market in relation to sources of supply, grid interconnection, pricing and quality of service of all parties.
6. Support renewable energy penetration in the power generation mix through standardised, technology-specific renewable energy PPAs.