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On Monday this week,Anguilla joined a number of regional and international countries in signing on to the Clinton Global Initiative. One of the most recent visits to the island by representatives of the Clinton Foundation, concerned with that initiative, was three weeks ago when the Castalla Group presented its final report to Government on Anguilla’s Renewable Energy Integration Project.

A Memorandum of Understanding, regarding the above Clinton Global Initiative, was signed by Chief Minister Hubert Hughes in the presence of a number of other Government officials and Mr. Jan Hartke, President Clinton’s Adviser on climate change issues.

The Clinton Global Initiative was established in 2005 to create and implement, among other matters, “innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges.” The Climate Foundation eventually launched a Climate Initiative in August 2006 with a mission of applying the Foundation’s business-oriented approach in the fight against climate change in practical, measurable and significant ways.

The Anguilla Government has not released the details of the MOU. However, the Chief Minister’s address, delivered at the signing ceremony, and issued on Monday, November 5, articulated some of the island’s expectations. He said in part:“I would like to thank President Clinton and [the] Clinton Climate Initiative for taking a keen interest in Anguilla to support our goal to reduce greenhouse gases; and reduce our impact, as small as it may be, on the heating up of the planet and partnering with us to achiev the same.”


The rest of the Chief Minister’s address was as follows: “Over the last hundred years, the ocean has risen eight inches and is expected to rise a further one to three meters over the next hundred years. Both the Government of Anguilla and [the] Clinton Climate Change Initiative recognise that, as climate change accelerates, small-island nations such as Anguilla will suffer a disproportionate share of the consequences, despite contributing very little to global greenhouse gas emissions.


“Our economy is based on our beaches and we must do all we can to protect them. We have seen severe beach erosion at a number of our beaches namely: Shoal Bay East especially in the area of Gwen’s Reggae Grill, Shoal Bay West,Barnes Bay,Cove Beach,Crocus Bay and others.

“Together, both parties see significant value in establishing a working model for islands making the transition from fossil fuel-based to low-carbon economies, a model which can then be replaced at scale among small island nations worldwide. The agreement represents the first step towards that goal. This will ensure that less money will be sent overseas for fuel which will result in less surcharge and more money in our local banks for lending to our people and improving liquidity.

“Very soon, we will have legislation to amend the Electricity Act to incorporate renewables so as to reduce our oil intake; reduce the cost and uncertainty of electricity and allow for both the electricity provider and private citizens to contribute to my Government’s goal of exploring and implementing alternative energy sources such as wind, solar, and geothermal.

“This is in keeping  with our Manifesto Blueprint For Anguilla’s Rescue and Development 2010-2015…We stated we will give special concessions to those importing hybrid vehicles utilizing renewable energy sources, solar panels, wind turbines and other alternative energy-saving devices. We are happy to state that we have already started doing so and will continue in our goal of reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.

“I have been designated to sign this MOU on Anguilla’s behalf – and I do so proudly.”


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