Energy conservation and the implementation of an Energy Efficiency Building Code are critical to mitigate the impacts of climate change which pose great risks to countries, like St. Vincent and the Grenadines, within the Caribbean. This was the sentiment expressed by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Commerce in St. Vincent and Grenadines, Ms. Sandy Peters-Phillips, on Monday 24 July, 2017, when she addressed the opening of the Second Meeting of the Regional Project Team (RPT) for the Development of the CARICOM Energy Efficiency Building Code (EEBC).
The Meeting was held in Kingstown over two days, 24-25 July 2017, and, according to Dr. Devon Gardner, Programme Manager for Energy within the CARICOM Secretariat, signalled the “collective intent of CARICOM to act in a collaborative and cohesive manner to give life an Energy Efficiency Building Code for the Region”.
Dr. the Hon. Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, who was at the technical meeting session, provided critical insight into a number of key issues, especially the legal requirements and socioeconomic considerations at national levels, of which the RPT should be mindful. He indicated that the inclusive approach that was being pursued, with regard to the EEBC development, could contribute to balancing the technical options, which were being considered by the experts, with the national realities and provide an easier path for country adoption.
At this, the Second Meeting, the RPT reached consensus on a Draft Caribbean Application Document (CAD), just four months after the first meeting was convened in Kingston, Jamaica. The meeting also resulted in the endorsement of a programme of work for the effective, efficient and timely completion of the Regional EEBC.