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MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS THE ENVIRONMENT FOREIGN TRADE AND EXPORT DEVELOPMENT, KARL HOOD’S ADDRESS TO THE FIRST ASSEMBLY MEETING OF THE INTERNATIONAL RENEWABLE ENERGY AGENCY (IRENA) ABU DHABI UNITED ARAB EMIRATES(UAE)

Mr. President, distinguished delegates, Grenada is indeed honored to be here today to participate in this historic inaugural Assembly of IRENA. We applaud the smooth transition from an idea into reality. Truly, nothing is as powerful as an idea that has come of age. Today we have achieved a very significant milestone in our efforts to create a cleaner and safer environment for all.

We wish to recognize those who have worked consistently over the last few years to ensure that we have an international agency dedicated to the development of renewable energy around the world. We are pleased to have witnessed the emphatic support, given by the Assembly, to our new Director General,  Mr Amin. We offer our congratulations to you, sir, and look forward to working with you to achieve the ideals of this agency.

Mr. President esteemed delegates, indeed the promotion of clean and renewable energy is vital to our very survival. Those of us from small island developing states know too well, the effects that fossil fuels can have on our environment and economies. Grenada, as chair of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), is committed to the ideals of clean and renewable energy and, therefore, pledges its full support to IRENA and its work.

SIDS are particularly vulnerable to the climatic effects of greenhouse gases. That is why small island states are on the front line of the battle to arrest the ravages of Climate Change. We are not constrained by the inertia of larger economies; our smallness in size allows for flexibility and the ability to adapt.

The Government of Grenada has been working assiduously to increase the efficiency of its energy use and to develop its renewable energy sector. We are pleased to announce that, after two years of extensive consultation, we approved a National Energy Policy and a Sustainable Energy Action Plan which we hope, will transition our economy into a low carbon development path.

Grenada is blessed with abundant sources of renewable energy including geothermal, wind and solar. However, harnessing these resources require significant technology transfer and financial investments.

Mr. President, we hope that IRENA will be the driving force to significantly reduce the cost of renewable energy technologies and not become a marketing bazaar for developed countries to sell expensive and sometimes inappropriate technology to developing countries. We look forward to active participation in IRENA and the meaningful role that this agency will play to assist our economy in its transition to a sustainable energy pathway.

In closing, Grenada joins the other delegations in offering condolences and support to the Government and People of Japan on the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami that struck a few weeks ago. We are confident that the strength and resilience of the Japanese people will emerge to overcome this enormous challenge.

I thank you.



Category/ies:Grenada Speeches.
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