UAE partners with the Government of Antigua and Barbuda, the CDF and the New Zealand Ministry to help build the project
UAE has announced the disbursement of $5.7 million to support Antigua and Barbuda to aid in building a hybrid solar-diesel power station equipped with hurricane-resilient battery storage. It is the largest renewable energy initiative of its kind in the Caribbean region.
The funding will be overseen by the UAE-Caribbean Renewable Energy Fund (UAE-CREF) which is a partnership between the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC), Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), and Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar), is also responsible for the execution, project design and implementation of the project.
Alternatively, the UAE-CREF has announced a partnership with the Government of Antigua and Barbuda’s Ministry of Public Utilities, Civil Aviation, Transport and Energy, the CARICOM Development Fund (CDF) and the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (NZMFAT) to help build the project.
According to the agreement, the UAE-CREF had put forth $3.5 million during the first round of funding in 2017, in addition to $700,000 of humanitarian funding the UAE provided to Antigua and Barbuda after Hurricane Irma in 2017. The Government of Antigua and Barbuda also put forth $1 million through the CDF, while the Government of New Zealand donated $500,000.
The project aims to build a modern, climate-resilient, safe, reliable and sustainable supply of electrical power for Barbuda, which once operational will displace an estimated 260,000 litres of diesel fuel per year. This will help the Government of Antigua and Barbuda to save $320,000 and offset 690 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually and also supports Barbuda’s green tourism industry.
HE Sultan Al Shamsi, Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation for International Development Affairs for the UAE expressed his contentment with this project and stressed that it comes within the framework of the UAE’s efforts.
“Providing the island with a solar power plant will solve its energy crisis, provide clean, environmentally friendly energy, and improve the living conditions of islanders who will operate and maintain the new solar power plant to help reduce the impact of climate change,” Al Shamsi stated.
Meanwhile, Sir Robin Yearwood, Minister of Public Utilities, Civil Aviation, Transport and Energy of Antigua and Barbuda, thanked the UAE, the Government of New Zealand and CDF for their contribution to the transformative energy project, and said that this will serve as a model for other Caribbean SIDS (Small Island Developing States).
“This project will be a core component of the efforts by our government to transform Barbuda into possibly the first truly climate-resilient community in our region and doing this within a sustainable energy framework,” he concluded.