PARAMARIBO, Suriname, Thursday December 28, 2017 – With just a few months left before the Regional Energy Efficiency Building Code (REEBC) is taken to the Council of Trade and Economic Development (COTED), Caribbean energy experts are confident that member states will accept the code that has been developed after a series of regional consultations.
Speaking at the final Regional Project Team (RPT) meeting for the CARICOM Regional Energy Efficiency Building Code (CREEBC) in Suriname, Chairman of the Regional Project Team, Norbert Churchill noted that there was an urgent need for the region to accept and implement such a code.
He highlighted the recent catastrophic hurricanes that battered the region and explained that regional leaders agreed that it was time to establish policies, standards and codes that would help to strengthen the resilience of the Caribbean.
According to World Trade Organization (WTO) guidelines, any standard developed is a voluntary document so it is the responsibility of the Member State to adopt and implement accordingly.
“It is not only the formal implementation that is important, but it is also the direction and the leadership that is shown by governments who commit to taking an initiative like this forward,” said Glynn Morris, Programme Leader of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, through the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Technical Assistance (REETA) Programme.
Dr Devon Gardner, Head of the Energy Unit, CARICOM Secretariat, said CARICOM was working with partners to ensure that there will be mechanisms in place to drive energy efficiency markets which will make the implementation process easier.
He said the development of the draft standard over the past nine months had benefited from the involvement of women and youth who are key stakeholders.
The first RPT meeting that was held in Jamaica had approved the use of the International Energy Conservation Code 2018 (IECC 2018) as the reference guide for the Regional EEBC. Since then, a draft Caribbean Application Document (CAD) was developed, through cooperation between the CARICOM Secretariat and the CARICOM Regional Organization for Standards and Quality (CROSQ), and reviewed by committees established within the member states that engaged key stakeholders. The revised draft of the CAD was then circulated in member states for validation.
The project is being funded by the GIZ. Once the Regional Energy Efficiency Building Code is approved by COTED, a regional energy standard will be developed within a year.