The public education campaign aimed to:
• Section 6(d) to promote innovation and facilitate economic and national development.
• Section 62(e) take such other initiatives as it is considers to be consistent with its mandate to contribute to national development and economic growth.
① In November 2019, the Department of Planning hosted a series of training seminars to assist participants in gaining a better understanding of Photovoltaic System Requirements and the essential code changes to the 2017 NEC. Training was presented by the International Association of Electrical Inspectors (IAEI) code experts.
② The University College of the Cayman Islands (UCCI) developed a certificate programme called “Electro-Technology Certificate” which exposes learners to 87 hours of study in Solar Photovoltaic. The University also plans to introduce a programme that caters to renewable energy in the near future. However there has been low registration due to concerns there may not be any jobs in solar installation until additional capacity is available on the grid.
③ An Environmental Education Committee was formed with the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure, Department of Environment and other local environmental groups. The vision was to strengthen our connection with the environment as a central tenant of Caymanian culture through enhanced and accessible environmental education for all. There are two main goals of the committee: a. Facilitate collaboration between environmental organisations – to improve communication between organisations to maintain partnerships in education projects. b. Engage schools and educational groups in science education – to enhance engagement and communication between schools and external education organisations (included but not limited to charities, non-profits, and government) to facilitate high-quality, up-to-date and relevant environmental education.
④ The ReSEMBiD Programme, which provides funding and technical support from the EU, has approved a concept note for the creation of a programme to conduct energy audits and retrofits to public sector buildings. On the job training for local facility managers and students of apprentice programmes have been included in the proposal. The proposal is currently at stage two which requires the provision of additional details of how the programme will run. The island of Montserrat has submitted a similar proposal to ReSEMBiD and this provides an opportunity for collaboration between the two islands.
⑤ The Cayman Islands Government sponsored and hosted the Caribbean Transitional Energy Conference in 2017, 2018 and 2020. These conferences were organised by the Cayman Renewable Energy Association with the aim of bringing together local, regional and international clean energy experience and expertise to Cayman
The Transmission and Distribution (T&D) Code is available online - https://www.cuc-cayman.com/customer-service/termsof-service/. This code needs to be reviewed to determine if it complies with this strategy or if additional standards and codes are required. OfReg to create the necessary guidelines to communicate the relevant guidelines and codes.
OfReg will pursue this goal as part of its revised 5-year strategic plan. Work is due to commence in 2022 and targeted for completion in 2023.
① In January 2020, the Minister of Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure, Hon. Joey Hew participated in the 4th Annual Caribbean Infrastructure Forum (CARIF 2020) which took place in Kingston, Jamaica from January 21-22. Hon. Joey Hew represented the Premier Hon. Alden McLaughlin in the keynote opening session and served as a panellist with other leading voices in the region to address the topic, “Walking the Walk – Adoption of Sustainable Energy to Power Island Governments”. CARIF convenes the region’s public sector, utilities, financiers and project investors to map out the region’s infrastructure needs, foster new relationships and introduce Caribbean projects to international sources of expertise and financing. Some of the themes covered included investment in infrastructure, financing and construction of world class projects across the region, developing robust energy matrices and public-private partnerships mechanics for the Caribbean.
② The Energy Policy Co-ordinator, spoke at a number of high-profile, Energy related events to promote the work of the Ministry of Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure and to raise awareness of the National Energy Policy and the progress of Energy Cayman. These events included, the Chamber of Commerce Economic Update, the Caribbean Renewable Energy Forum (CREF), the Caribbean Transitional Energy Conference (CTEC), presentation to the Cayman Contractors Association.
③ State of the Nation During his State of the Nation address in October 2020, Premier Alden McLaughlin spoke extensively about the importance of the National Energy Policy and progress to date. The Premier said: " In addition to transportation, another good example is the scope we have to accelerate the delivery of the National Energy Policy that my previous Administration devised. Two key actions stand out for their ability to genuinely move the dial on the Policy’s ambitions. In doing so they will both also create new jobs and business opportunities for Caymanians in a similar way to that offered by the digital economy I spoke about earlier.
The first is to reduce energy consumption by improving the energy efficiency of the existing building stock. The Government needs to take responsibility for its footprint in this respect and we are commissioning a series of energy audits for public sector buildings. The result will be a programme of energy-saving measures that can be implemented in the future, achieving energy and financial savings.
I want to see the same approach extended to private sector buildings in both the domestic and commercial property sectors. Government has a responsibility to support this work. Most obviously, some of the least energy-efficient buildings are houses occupied by some of those least able to finance improvements to those buildings. The Government will therefore look at the possibility of providing grants and incentives that do not just repair but also improve the energy efficiency of them.
These kinds of improvements will not just yield energy benefits. They will reduce the cost of living for poorer households, reduce fuel poverty and help improve outcomes for health issues linked to poor housing. These types of programmes create jobs in the retrofit sector. Energy-saving measures are relatively labour intensive to implement and therefore the impact on jobs could be potentially significant, provided these jobs are taken by unemployed Caymanians. As much of the technology may be new to the Islands, training and skills development would be required. The apprenticeship centre at the Public Works Department and the trade schools operating on the Island with the Government’s support could rapidly expand to provide the necessary training places for Caymanians as part of our existing strategy to revise this country’s approach to technical and vocational skills development. In short, I believe there is the potential for Cayman to develop as a centre of excellence in energy efficiency for the entire Caribbean region.” The Premier also commented regarding renewable energy that the Government “… also believe that there is the potential to look afresh at the contribution of distributed networks. The experience with the CORE programme gives us a place to start but the experience globally has moved on and new models have been developed from which we can learn. The Government has therefore welcomed the Governor’s offer to seek expert technical support from the UK to move work in the renewables sector forward.”
As a result the Governor’s Office have been in contact with stakeholders involved in climate change and environmental issues, such as: Ministry of Health, Environment, Culture and Housing, the Department of Environment, the Ministry for Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure and the Cayman Islands Government Office in the United Kingdom, local NGOs and the private sector. Discussions will take place with OFREG and CUC to ensure their support and buy-in once this Cabinet paper has been agreed. Three key areas of support on climate change risk assessment, renewable energy and protecting biodiversity have also been identified as having the potential of benefitting from expert technical expertise in order to move the initiatives forward.