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Formulation of energy policy and sustainable energy plan underway in Dominica

Dominica’s Minister for Energy, Charles Savarin has revealed that the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), in association with the Organisation of American States (OAS) and the German Technical Assistance (GTZ) has consented to provide technical assistance for the formulation of a National Energy Policy and Sustainable Energy Plan for Dominica.

The Minister pointed out that such a Policy and Plan to guide the emerging legislative framework for the energy sector is considered an important deliverable as the Government forges ahead with initiatives in renewable energy, supplementary power generation and the like to provide lower cost, more reliable and improved security of the energy needs of Dominica.

The Minister stressed that the National Energy Policy must contain the following:

* It must take into account the needs of the consumer.
* It must consider Dominica’s national development objectives and the impact of energy security and supply.
* The cost of energy.
* The sustainability of new sources of energy development.
* The export potential of renewable energy.
* The prospect for the establishment of high energy consuming industries and economic activity in Dominica generally.

“The Sustainable Energy Plan for Dominica, we hope, will look at the regional market for electricity generated from renewable source in Dominica and will include components such as establishing reasonable production targets for identified renewable energy sources, offering proposed solutions to overcome obstacles and challenges and setting out a timetable for achieving the goals of the Sustainable Energy Plan,” Savarin said.

In his address, Savarin also told the participants that the Government of Dominica requested technical assistance from the World Bank under the Growth and Social Protection Technical Assistance project to produce draft Legislation and Regulations that will provide the legal and regulatory framework for the development of Alternative Energy and Alternative Energy Technology in Dominica.

According to the Minister, such draft Legislation and Regulations will focus on the development of geothermal energy resources as the primary source of energy and electricity generation in Dominica.

Savarin also revealed that in January of this year his Ministry requested technical assistance from the Energy Unit of the CARICOM Secretariat under the Caribbean Renewable Energy Development Programme (CREDP) to undertake:

* A review of the Electricity Supply Act of 2006;
* Preparation of draft regulations for the Electricity Supply Act;
* Formulation of the Energy Policy and Sustainable Energy Plan for Dominica; and
* The Development and elaboration of an Electricity Generation Plan for Dominica

Support for the review of the Electricity Supply Act of 2006 and the preparation of draft regulations in respect of the Electricity Supply Act is being provided with support from the German Technical Assistance.

The Minister underlined how critical these actions are for Dominica at this time:

It will help to provide clarity to many aspects of the Act and to streamline some of the processes in terms of its administrative and technical provisions.

The drafting of regulations in respect of the Act will complete, for example, the requirements for licensing of electricity producers and suppliers in Dominica and for the imposition of penalties on defaulters.

The regulations will provide guidance for the concluding of Power Purchase Agreements between a dominant distributor of electricity and Independent Power Producers.

The role and function of the Independent Regulatory Commission (IRC) will receive special attention as a robust IRC is critical to all the developments being pursued.

Savarin made the remarks at a Multi-Sector Stakeholder consultation on the formulation of a National Energy Policy and Sustainable Energy Plan for Dominica held in Roseau recently.

Source: Caribbean Net News

Category/ies:Dominica News.
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