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IDB Ramps Up Lending for Green Energy in Latin America and the Caribbean

By: Caribbean Journal Staff - March 16, 2012

Above: Green energy is growing in the region, with projects like the WindWatt Wind Farm in Nevis (CJ Photo)

By the Caribbean Journal staff

The Inter-American Development Bank is increasing its lending for private sector projects related to renewable energy and energy efficiency in Latin American and the Caribbean.

In 2011, the IDB approved $736 million in loans for private sector projects in green energy, compared with a total of $663 million from 2000 to 2010.

This year, the bank expects to approve more than $700 million in financing for green energy projects, particularly solar, wind and hydropower plants.

“The Latin American and the Caribbean region is committed to reducing its greenhouse gas footprint,” said Hans Schulz, head of the IDB’s Structured and Corporate Finance Department, which is responsible for large-scale private sector projects. “Several countries are beginning to develop their potential for wind, geothermal, bio energy production and solar energy, often through private sector leadership.”

Green energy projects in the region range from a geothermal exploration in Nevis and Dominica to Jamaica’s Wigton Wind Farm. In December, the IDB approved a $20 million grant to help complete and supplement financing for the refurbishment of the Peligre hydro plant in Haiti.

According to the International Energy Agency, energy demand in the region is expected to increase by 50 percent by 2030, requiring an estimated $1.5 trillion in global investments.

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