Senior Minister Kerrie Symmonds has sown a “conspiracy of silence” about support for renewable energy plans in Barbados.
In harsh words on the floor of the House of Assembly, he criticized the “glib” way in which influential people here approach matters concerning the continued safe existence of humanity.
He further criticized the “obstruction to progress” that exists in Barbados with the “studious dedication” that does not support the government’s efforts in renewable energy.
The St James Central MP also served some words to beat those whose navels are buried in the island, for not giving support and a voice to the national efforts.
“This is a strange thing,” he told fellow parliamentarians. “One would expect a certain level of loyalty to the country of your birth.
Speaking at the second reading of Utilities Regulations (Amendment) Bill in Parliament on Tuesday, Symmonds, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, also rebuked opposition politicians and the media for a lack of commitment to the energy cause as Barbados faces the open floodgates of attempt to eliminate gridlock in energy storage. Journalists have a part to play in raising the country’s visibility in the renewable energy battle, he stated.
While praising his government’s attempts to unleash the potential of renewable energy in Barbados, Symmonds said the country must be prepared because the global demand for renewable energy resources could increase by a night
Coming out of the COP28 global climate summit last week, there was an understanding that the transition from fossil fuels was imminent, an issue that had been debated for a long time in Barbados, he stated.
“For the first time last week, there was a global understanding that there would be a transition from the use of fossil fuels and a tripling of renewable energy investment around the world,” said Symmonds.
“We, as a government, have been sending signals over and over again to this country and to the stakeholders within the electricity sector and we urge you to listen because this opportunity must come and that the advantage gained by little Barbados before this moment a ‘first-mover advantage’.”
He explained that in the sea of demand for items such as inverters, condensers, transformers and batteries for solar photovoltaic power, Barbados as a small island has become irrelevant due to its relatively small purchasing power.
Now that the international community has signed the COP28 agreement to phase out fossil fuels, Symmonds said, this country will be forced to travel at “break-neck speed” as the world takes steps to go green.
He suggested that the modernization of the grid and purchase of transformers and other critical equipment is a task for the private sector and not for the government. This is why, he added, without “girding our loins”, systems must be put in place and relationships developed to deal with international “floodgates” while the rush to invest in a market with high demand.
“If we don’t take the action we’re taking now, we’ll be exactly where we were in the dark days of the pandemic when we wanted too few vaccines and the suppliers said, ‘you’re too few, the minister. said.
Symmonds said that as it did during the COVID-19 pandemic to access vaccines, Barbados is building partnerships “so we can unleash the potential of renewable energy”.
If we are not prepared for the expansion of the world market, he warned, Barbados will face “grave risks and dangers”.
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