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Governor Haynes promotes going green

governor_haynes_promotes_going_green.jpg / Search form Search Main menu Home News Business Sports Columns Contact Us E-Paper Governor of the Central Bank of Barbados (CBB), Cleviston Haynes.

Governor Haynes promotes going green Fri, 04/23/2021 – 6:00am By:  André Springer WHILE embracing the new virtual format of the Domestic Financial Institution Conference, Governor of the Central Bank of Barbados (CBB), Cleviston Haynes, presented the argument that going green was a significant benefit to Barbados.

Haynes commented on the virtually held April edition of the Domestic Financial Institution Conference (DFIC) of the CBB yesterday, saying that it was a necessary change following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and it had brought with it added benefits to the reach of the CBB regarding financial sector discussions.

“This format does welcome benefits that are absent from our more traditional, in-person sessions. First by spreading the conference over seven days, you can have more robust discussions on specific issues as we dedicate more time to a single issue each day,” said Haynes. “Second, after the traditional fiscal space constraints, the virtual format allows us to broaden our outreach and involve more participants in our discussions.”

Using the Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism session at the conference last year, Governor Haynes said that it attracted more people than before and had reached two hundred people initially and then rose significantly when the recording was posted to the social media platforms of the Bank.

The governor addressed the focus of the forum, ‘Increasing Household Investment in Renewable Energy: How the Financial Sector Can Help’, saying that the renewable energy sector discussion was an important one. He stated that the target of Barbados to become independent of fossil fuels by 2030 was ambitious, but could be possible if all entities fully bought into the idea including at the household level.

“We believe that the faster the progress we make towards this goal, the more we will realise benefits for our economy. We need energy to drive our economic activity, but we cannot ignore the fact that pre-COVID import bill for oil and other fuels exceeded Bds$700 million,” he said.

He contended that the purchase of these fuels eroded the foreign exchange reserves and the sooner there was significant investment in renewables, the sooner Barbados could reduce the import bill and benefit from direct and indirect savings of foreign exchange.

“A vibrant, renewable energy sector also has the potential for new, more sustainable jobs. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has suggested that the green economy could result in a job-rich recovery post-COVID, creating employment in renewables, new infrastructure and climate resilience,” said the governor.

Haynes added that the International Labour Organisation (ILO) had reiterated the creation of jobs when it forecasted that there was a possibility of 24 million new jobs created through the rising green economy by 2030. The governor explained that such forecasts supported the effort Barbados was making to build out the green economy to address the issues associated with climate change.

“Given our own susceptibility to natural disasters here in Barbados and the Caribbean, we have been making representation in international forums for support to build a more resilient and sustainable economy and society. We now need to demonstrate our own commitment to doing our part, by ensuring that we embrace going green in all aspects of our lives,” stated Haynes.

He however warned that any significant move such as moving away entirely from fossil fuels created a new set of challenges and there was a need for contingency plans. He highlighted the need to manage energy supply shortages and shortcomings in the situation where the rays from the sun were temporarily dimmed, and players in the sector would have to create buffers to protect the island and consumers for a ‘rainy day’.

LINK ORIGINAL: Barbados Advocate

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