Antigua & Barbuda’s Prime Minister Gaston Browne said the government he leads fully understands that climate change is a real issue, and he is mobilising his fellow legislators and residents to become climate ready by implementing national activities on climate change.
Browne spoke with Caribbean News Service (CNS) shortly after he and 170 world leaders declared an end to the fossil fuel era, using the signing ceremony of the landmark Paris agreement as an occasion to renew their vows to fight climate change.
“Even before Paris and here in New York today, my government has been totally committed to the issue of climate change. In fact, in our 2014 election manifesto we actually committed to reducing emissions by 20 per cent by 2020,” he told CNS.
“So far we have diversified our energy mix into alternate energy to include a 10-megawatt solar voltaic application that we have actually introduced. Three megawatts have been installed so far and during the daytime hours our VC Bird International Airport terminal is being powered exclusively by solar power.”
The government is spending in excess of US $21 million for the solar voltaic facility.
In addition, Browne said another facility will be built later this year, funded under the IRENA (International Renewable Energy Agency) programme that will make available an additional US $15 million.
“Both of these combined will see at least US $37 million invested within the first two and a half years of our government in renewable applications. So that is demonstrative of the commitment that we have towards the issue of climate change and to build a climate resilient economy,” said Prime Minister Browne.
(More in the Daily Observer)