Above: St Lucia (CJ Photo)
By Dana Niland
St Lucia is is continuing to work to strengthen its renewable energy and conservation efforts across the island through a variety of sustainability projects.
One of the initiatives is the Disaster Vulnerability Reduction Project, which aims to provide sustainable energy solutions to reduce risks from natural hazards and the adverse impacts of climate change.
The country’s government has provided financial assistance to the project, according to St Lucia Minister for Sustainable Development, Energy, Science and Technology Dr James Fletcher.
“We’ve allocated $5 million that will be disbursed through the Saint Lucia Development Bank that will be available for energy retrofits,” Fletcher said. “[It is for] those who want to put solar PV panels in their rooms; those who want to retrofit their rooms with LED lights and also those who want to do dual plumbing retrofits so they can make use of rainwater harvesting.”
The government is also allocating funds towards the Cocoa Adaptation Project, a joint collaboration between the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Sustainable Development, which aims to conserve the island’s cocoa resources.
“The government has planted over 11,000 cocoa trees on 44 hectares of land throughout Saint Lucia. This is aimed at improving land cover and soil protection while enhancing livelihoods. We’ve targeted 130 farmers to date,” Fletcher said.