News

Haiti Planning Solar Energy Rollout

By: Caribbean Journal Staff - July 11, 2012

Above: solar panels at Mirebalais’ new hospital (Photo: PIH)

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Haiti is planning the rollout of more than 7,000 new solar street lamps for the country, according to Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe.

The Prime Minister made the announcement following a meeting before the Finance Committee of Haiti’s Chamber of Deputies on Tuesday.

Lamothe, who was accompanied at the talks by Planning Minister Josepha Gauthier and Finance Minister Marie Carmelle Jean-Marie, also discussed parliamentarians’ concerns over the proper management of funds allocated to local authorities.

On that front, the Prime Minister announced the creation of what he called a bipartisan steering committee of 18 representatives to facilitate the use of funds from the 2011-2012 budget.

The solar energy plan has 400 lamps already available for distribution. It’s part of an infrastructure push Lamothe’s office said included an emphasis on the construction of new schools and multi-sport centres.

Haiti has been the scene of a number of solar projects in recent months, highlighted by the solar array at the new Mirebalais Teaching Hospital that is being built in a partnership between Partners in Health and its Haitian sister organization, Zanmi Lasante.

The Solar Electric Light Fund has been installing solar electric systems at healthcare facilities across Haiti, a project that could bring power to 170,000 Haitians.

Haiti currently has the lowest rate of electricity coverage in the Western Hemisphere, with a reported rate of 12.5 percent.

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