Saint Lucia’s Minister of Infrastructure, Ports, Transport, Physical Development, and Urban Renewal, Stephenson King, has urged Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Small Island Developing States (SIDS), to intensify moves towards energy security.
On Thursday, King chaired a Special Meeting of the Council for Trade and Economic Development (COTED) on Energy.
In his opening remarks, the former Saint Lucia Prime Minister described Energy as the lifeblood of any society, impacting economic competitiveness.
King spoke of the need to find an equilibrium between citizens’ standard of living and the cost of Energy and its associated commodities.
“To attain this aspiration, it is essential that we develop our full potential of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency to transform our energy landscape to one that is climate resilient, sustainable, reliable, and affordable, thus improving the quality of life of our people,” he stated.
“Presently, at this time in the global environment, with the uncertainties that the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict presents to us and the repercussions already placed at our doorsteps, with volatile and spiralling global oil prices, we, as CARICOM SIDS, must further intensify our drive towards Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency and ultimately Energy Security,” King told the event.
However, he explained that attaining these milestones could only happen if CARICOM states are resilient collectively, not separately.
“It is our human capacity that will define our resilience,” King observed.
He noted that the Caribbean region is vulnerable to the environmental effects of climate change.
And he recalled that CARICOM Member States have been negotiating for ‘our lives’ in the climate race, advocating that the world needs to maintain temperature increases below 1.5 degrees to stay alive, as temperatures above pre-industrial levels will be detrimental to the Caribbean region.
“As CARICOM SIDS, our advocacy on the subject must be sustained and the decibel levels must be synthesised and intensified if we are to achieve this survival landmark,” King asserted.