Energy efficiency is certainly getting its due in Jamaica. The Build Better Jamaica follow-on Energy Retrofit Workshop is fully booked and is expected to offer concrete solutions to build energy efficient structures sustainably. Scheduled for Tuesday, November 26 at the Knutsford Court Hotel from 8.30am – 4.30pm, the Workshop will feature the Minister of Energy, the Honourable Fayval Williams, as the keynote speaker.
The Workshop comes on the heels of more than 11,000 scientists from 153 countries (Jamaica is one) warning “The climate crisis has arrived and is accelerating faster than most scientists expected.”
Perhaps presciently, in 2009 Jamaica’s Ministry of Energy and Mining (now MSET) urged that Jamaica needed a comprehensive programme of efficiency improvement and energy diversification for high-quality, affordable, environmentally-friendly energy and to reduce the country’s dependence on high-cost imported oil. This is in keeping with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 7) Clean and Affordable Energy.
The Workshop is intended to attract stakeholders in the built environment who want to find ways to transition to clean, green energy and adopt energy efficient practices. Globally, one third of emissions comes directly from buildings. Jamaica’s Nationally Determined Contributions under the Paris Agreement, state that Jamaica will mitigate the equivalent of 1.1 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide per year by 2030.
Recently, the current administration said they want to go further and increase this ambition as announced in New York’s UN SDG Summit in September 2019. With the scale of the challenge and opportunity that this presents, the built environment is key and this Workshop shows how we can play our part and start now.
This is part of why Build Better Jamaica is hosting this event. It is a chance to share the knowledge from our Net Zero Energy Building project and National Housing Trust’s retrofitting so that this expertise can be used to better our industry and translate into tangible actions to promote energy efficiency in our sector. This will ultimately create a better life for Jamaicans and makes business sense by lowering the cost of production and operations.
The challenge must be pursued rigorously in both the public and private sectors. We welcome industry experts to contribute to the conversation, raise their concerns and share any solutions or innovative projects they have in their portfolio. We have an array of distinguished guests to bring something different to the table and we look forward to a fruitful and productive discussion. Let’s take the conversations to the next stage – implementation!