By Dana Niland
The government of Belize has signed a Memorandum of Understanding today to join the Ten Island Challenge, a partnership initiative between Carbon War Room (CWR) and Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI).
The move signals the Caribbean country’s commitment to transition its transportation sector and outlying islands off of fossil fuel use.
“We are thrilled to have Belize join the challenge. Belize is a real leader in the region, producing 60% of its electricity from local and renewable hydro and biomass resources,” said José María Figueres, Chairman of the Board of CWR and RMI.
These organizations will work with the Belizean government to develop strategies that will help Belize reach its low-carbon objectives while also creating economic solutions for reducing the country’s dependence on fossil fuels.
Belize will focus on projects includingthe exploration of potential wind energy resources and electric automobiles, the adaptation of policy and programs for sustainable mobility, the development of a partnership with Belize Electricity Limited and examination for the potential improvement of energy efficiency in hospitals across the country.
Senator Joy Grant of the Belize Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology and Public Utilities said that Belize is pleased to join the Ten Island Challenge, which includes other Caribbean nations working to transition their economies away from heavy dependence on fossil fuels.
According to Grant, Belize’s objective with the initiative is to achieve its renewable energy production target of 89 percent in the electricity sector by 2033.
“Achieving this milestone will also allow Belize to enhance its energy security and build its energy resiliency, while ensuring that it buffers its economy from the oil-price chocks that have debilitating impacts on small, open economies like Belize,” she said.