Our Tweets

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,038 other followers

Archives

Contact Info

501 822-1104
Mon - Fri 8am to 5pm (-6 GMT)

Blog Stats

  • 46,682 hits

RSS SIDS-L IISD

Guess Which Caribbean Island Just Went 100% Renewable? Bonaire!

Like many Caribbean islands, Bonaire originally relied on diesel fuel to generate electricity for residents, with a peak demand of 11 megawatts (MW). This fuel had to be shipped in from other nations, resulting in high electricity prices for Bonaire residents, along with uncertainty about when and how much prices might increase with changing fuel costs.

In 2004, everything changed when a fire destroyed the existing diesel power plant. Although tragic, the situation provided an opportunity for Bonaire to consider what kind of new electricity system to build. Temporary diesel generators were rented to provide power for the short term. Meanwhile, the government and local utility began working together to create a plan that would allow Bonaire to reach a goal of generating 100 percent of its electricity from renewable sources.

Bonaire’s Electricity System Transformation

The result is a transformed electricity system on Bonaire. The island is now home to 12 wind turbines with a total of 11 MW of wind power capacity, which contribute up to 90 percent of the island’s electricity at times of peak wind, and 40-45 percent of its annual electricity on average.

Battery storage (6 MWh) is included in order to take advantage of available power in times of excess wind, and provide that stored electricity in times of low wind. The battery also boosts the reliability of the overall system—it is capable of providing 3 MW for over two minutes, allowing time for additional generation to be started when there is a sudden drop in wind.

The Bonaire system also includes 14 MW of diesel generation, five total generators, which provide the necessary power to meet the load when there is not enough wind power available. The generators are equipped to run on both traditional diesel as well as biodiesel. The next steps in the island’s energy transformation involve using local algae resources, grown in the large salt flats on the island, to create biofuel, which can then be used in the existing generators. This will allow Bonaire to operate a 100 percent renewable electricity system—with on average 40–45 percent from wind and 55-60 percent from biodiesel.

The new electricity system led to more reliable electricity, more employment opportunities, reduced dependence on oil (and its fluctuating prices), and a reduction in electricity bills. Bonaire residents currently pay $0.22/kWh for electricity, much lower than prices on other nearby Caribbean islands, which are often $0.36/kWh or above.

When oil prices spiked in 2008, while Bonaire was still using temporary diesel generators before making its transition to renewables, electricity prices on the island reached $0.50/kWh. The new electricity system also created jobs for the construction and ongoing operation of the wind farm, and for research and development of algae production capabilities and conversion to biofuel. Additional employment opportunities will be created for continuing algae production and operation of the biodiesel plant.

The success of the updated electricity system on Bonaire provides an important example to other nearby islands of the opportunity to achieve high levels of renewable energy penetration.

BonaireBoris Kasimov

Why Did Bonaire Make the Switch to Renewables?

Two aspects unique to Bonaire’s situation may have contributed to the decision to switch to a 100 percent renewable electricity system. One driver may have been Bonaire’s status as a special municipality within the Kingdom of the Netherlands. This provides a connection with the Netherlands and Europe in general, where many countries have incorporated large amounts of wind and other renewable sources of electricity.

Nearby Aruba, also a Dutch Caribbean island, has a wind farm as well, which provides up to 20 percent of the island’s electricity. There may be a common theme of islands with ties to European countries moving to renewables more quickly than others. In the case of Bonaire, the consortium that is developing the project, Ecopower Bonaire BV, is made up of Dutch and German companies.

Secondly, Bonaire’s government and local electricity provider were presented with an opportunity to build a new renewable electricity system since they needed to replace the plant that was damaged. Many other Caribbean islands still have existing diesel resources that are not at the end of their lifetime.

These existing generators may remain a part of the electricity system, especially as renewables are incrementally added to the system, and may even remain as backup power for a transformed system that operates mostly with renewables. However, if some or all of the existing diesel resources on an island are completely shut down before the end of their available lifetime, that island will need to consider the sunk costs involved and incorporate that into their overall energy transformation plan.

Bonaire as Inspiration for the Caribbean

Rocky Mountain Institute and Carbon War Room‘s ongoing Ten Island Challenge works with Caribbean islands to utilize their local renewable resource potential to transform electricity systems and provide a renewable, reliable, secure and affordable energy supply for their citizens. One of the participating islands is Aruba, which neighbors Bonaire and forms part of the ABC islands in the Netherlands Antilles, along with Curacao.

Although the shift to renewables on Bonaire is not part of the Ten Island Challenge, Rocky Mountain Institute and Carbon War Room’s ongoing work in the area will strive to spread the success that Bonaire has achieved to the rest of the region, so that more Caribbean islands can take advantage of efficient and renewable electricity systems.

Credit: Business Insider UK via ECOWatch

Watch our feature video A Partnership Success Story to learn more about renewable energy and Climate Change in the Caribbean.

Response #3 to Invitation for EoI: Coastal Protection for Climate Change Adaptation in the Small Island States in the Caribbean Project No. 2012.9762.1

The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) wishes to provide “Response #3 to Queries and Request for Clarifications for Amendment/Revision of Expressions of Interest: Coastal Protection for Climate Change Adaptation in the Small Island States in the Caribbean Project No. 2012.9762.1″

Peruse Response #3
Peruse Response 1 and 2 below:
Response #1 to Queries Received - EoI - IC
Response #2 to Queries Received - EoI - IC
Learn more about the Amendment/Revision of Expressions of Interest: Coastal Protection for Climate Change Adaptation in the Small Island States in the Caribbean Project No. 2012.9762.1

Responses to Queries and Request for Clarifications for Amendment/Revision of Expressions of Interest: Coastal Protection for Climate Change Adaptation in the Small Island States in the Caribbean Project No. 2012.9762.1

The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) wishes to provide the following Responses to Queries and Request for Clarifications for Amendment/Revision of Expressions of Interest: Coastal Protection for Climate Change Adaptation in the Small Island States in the Caribbean Project No. 2012.9762.1″

Peruse the following:

Response #1 to Queries Received – EoI – IC

Response #2 to Queries Received – EoI – IC

Learn more about the Amendment/Revision of Expressions of Interest: Coastal Protection for Climate Change Adaptation in the Small Island States in the Caribbean Project No. 2012.9762.1

Amendment/Revision of Expressions of Interest: Coastal Protection for Climate Change Adaptation in the Small Island States in the Caribbean Project No. 2012.9762.1

The Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) is seeking Expressions of Interest (EoI) for Consulting Services for the Implementation Consultant (IC) to assist the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC) in the implementation of the Coastal Protection for Climate Change Adaptation in the Small Island States in the Caribbean Project. Qualified Independent Consultants are invited to submit a pre-qualification document. Funds have been earmarked for this Project by the German bilateral Financial Cooperation, provided through KfW Development Bank.

Ref-No: BZM 201297621

Project-No: 2012.9762.1

Deadline for submission of EoI is at 2:00 pm January 30, 2015, Belize Time.  Late submissions will not be accepted.

Peruse the official EoI request here.

EoIs should be submitted in one original and three copies to:

Project Manager

Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre
Attn: Ms. Dorett Tennyson, Procurement and Administrative Officer
Second Floor Lawrence Nicholas Building
Ring Road
P. O. Box 563
Belmopan, Belize
Tel: 501-822-1094, 822-1104
Fax: 501-822-1365
E-mail: dtennyson@caribbeanclimate.bz 

One copy of the EoIs should also be submitted to KfW no later than January 30, 2015:

KfW
Attn. Klaus Koehnlein, LAb6
Palmengartenstr. 5-9
60325 Frankfurt am Main,
Federal Republic of Germany

Reflections on the UN Climate Talks (Guest Post)

COP 20 wrapped up in Lima, Peru last week and many attendees are reflecting on the negotiations. Today Caribbean Climate features a review by Indi Mclymont-Lafayette, a Journalist and the Regional Director of Panos Caribbean – a non-government organisation that focuses on development communication. Soo… what has been achieved after two weeks of talks? That was … Continue reading

Pathways to climate change adaptation: the case of Small Island Developing States

The University of Geneva is now providing a course called "Pathways to climate change adaptation: the case of Small Island Developing States". This course provides an overview of climate change adaptation for Small Island Developing States (SIDS). It will present key concepts regarding the issues of adaptation to climate change and the methodological tools needed to analyse challenges faced by SIDS in order to propose sustainable solutions.
Learn more about the course here.

Lessons from Jamaica’s Billion-Dollar Drought

The Yallahs River, one of the main water sources for Jamaica's Mona Reservoir, has been dry for months. Credit: Desmond Brown/IPS

The Yallahs River, one of the main water sources for Jamaica’s Mona Reservoir, has been dry for months. Credit: Desmond Brown/IPS

As Jamaica struggles under the burden of an ongoing drought, experts say ensuring food security for the most vulnerable groups in society is becoming one of the leading challenges posed by climate change.

“The disparity between the very rich and the very poor in Jamaica means that persons living in poverty, persons living below the poverty line, women heading households with large numbers of children and the elderly are greatly disadvantaged during this period,” Judith Wedderburn, Jamaica project director at the non-profit German political foundation Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES), told IPS.

“The food production line gets disrupted and the cost of food goes up, so already large numbers of families living in poverty have even greater difficulty in accessing locally grown food at reasonable prices.” — Judith Wedderburn of FES

“The concern is that as the climate change implications are extended for several years that these kinds of situations are going to become more and more extreme, [such as] greater floods with periods of extreme drought.”

Wedderburn, who spoke with IPS on the sidelines of a FES and Panos Caribbean workshop for journalists held here earlier this month, said Caribbean countries – which already have to grapple with a finite amount of space for food production – now have the added challenges of extreme rainfall events or droughts due to climate change.

“In Jamaica, we’ve had several months of drought, which affected the most important food production parishes in the country,” she said, adding that the problem does not end when the drought breaks.

“We are then affected by extremes of rainfall which results in flooding. The farming communities lose their crops during droughts [and] families associated with those farmers are affected. The food production line gets disrupted and the cost of food goes up, so already large numbers of families living in poverty have even greater difficulty in accessing locally grown food at reasonable prices and that contributes to substantial food insecurity – meaning people cannot easily access the food that they need to keep their families well fed.”

One local researcher predicts that things are likely to get even worse. Dale Rankine, a PhD candidate at the University of the West Indies (UWI), told IPS that climate change modelling suggests that the region will be drier heading towards the middle to the end of the century.

“We are seeing projections that suggest that we could have up to 40 percent decrease in rainfall, particularly in our summer months. This normally coincides with when we have our major rainfall season,” Rankine said.

“This is particularly important because it is going to impact most significantly on food security. We are also seeing suggestions that we could have increasing frequency of droughts and floods, and this high variability is almost certainly going to impact negatively on crop yields.”

He pointed to “an interesting pattern” of increased rainfall over the central regions, but only on the outer extremities, while in the west and east there has been a reduction in rainfall.

“This is quite interesting because the locations that are most important for food security, particularly the parishes of St. Elizabeth [and] Manchester, for example, are seeing on average reduced rainfall and so that has implications for how productive our production areas are going to be,” Rankine said.

The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced recently that September 2014 was the hottest in 135 years of record keeping. It noted that during September, the globe averaged 60.3 degrees Fahrenheit (15.72 degrees Celsius), which was the fourth monthly record set this year, along with May, June and August.

According to NOAA’s National Climatic Data Centre, the first nine months of 2014 had a global average temperature of 58.72 degrees (14.78 degrees Celsius), tying with 1998 for the warmest first nine months on record.

Robert Pickersgill, Jamaica’s water, land, environment and climate change minister, said more than 18,000 small farmers have been affected by the extreme drought that has been plaguing the country for months.

He said the agricultural sector has lost nearly one billion dollars as a result of drought and brush fires caused by extreme heat waves.

Pickersgill said reduced rainfall had significantly limited the inflows from springs and rivers into several of the country’s facilities.

“Preliminary rainfall figures for the month of June indicate that Jamaica received only 30 per cent of its normal rainfall and all parishes, with the exception of sections of Westmoreland (54 percent), were in receipt of less than half of their normal rainfall. The southern parishes of St Elizabeth, Manchester, Clarendon, St Catherine, Kingston and St. Andrew and St. Thomas along with St Mary and Portland were hardest hit,” Pickersgill said.

Clarendon, he said, received only two percent of its normal rainfall, followed by Manchester with four percent, St. Thomas six percent, St. Mary eight percent, and 12 percent for Kingston and St. Andrew.

Additionally, Pickersgill said that inflows into the Mona Reservoir from the Yallahs and Negro Rivers are now at 4.8 million gallons per day, which is among the lowest since the construction of the Yallahs pipeline in 1986, while inflows into the Hermitage Dam are currently at six million gallons per day, down from more than 18 million gallons per day during the wet season.

“It is clear to me that the scientific evidence that climate change is a clear and present danger is now even stronger. As such, the need for us to mitigate and adapt to its impacts is even greater, and that is why I often say, with climate change, we must change,” Pickersgill told IPS.

Wedderburn said Jamaica must take immediate steps to adapt to climate change.

“So the challenge for the government is to explore what kinds of adaptation methods can be used to teach farmers how to do more successful water harvesting so that in periods of severe drought their crops can still grow so that they can have food to sell to families at reasonable prices to deal with the food insecurity.”

 Credit: IPS News

“A Partnership Success Story” – 5Cs hosts side event at COP 20 (video)

Save the date
The Small Island Developing States of the Caribbean are minute contributors to global greenhouse gas emissions, but are among the most vulnerable countries in the world to Climate Change. We are already experiencing its impacts. More frequent extreme weather events, such as the 2013 rain event in the Eastern Caribbean; the extreme droughts being experienced across the region, with severe consequences in places like Jamaica; the 2005 flooding in Guyana and Belize in 2010 are prime examples of the need for ambitious global action on climate adaptation and mitigation.

Inaction on Climate Change is simply too costly for our region. An economic analysis focused on just three areas – increased hurricane damages, loss of tourism revenue and infrastructure damages – shows it could cost the region US$10.7 Billion by 2025. That is more than the combined GDP of the nine countries that make up the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS).

Cognizant of these challenges, our negotiators are actively engaged in the Climate Change negotiations underway at COP 20 in Lima, Peru. We are also using the forum to share some of the transformational actions taken across the region in response to Climate Change and Climate Variability. Join us today for a side event dubbed "A Partnership Success Story - Reflecting on a Decade of Excellence and Charting the Future". The event is being held in collaboration with the Italian Republic and will include panel discussions and the screening of a feature video (shared below) about the Centre's work.

“Partnering for Survival” – Dr Kenrick Leslie calls for deeper partnerships to address Climate Change at COP 20

Dr Kenrick Leslie, CBE, Executive Director of the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre, addressed delegates at the UNFCCC COP 20/MOP 10 on December 12, 2014. Dr Leslie’s address focused on the Caribbean’s successes in tackling Climate Change in spite of significant challenges and urged greater partnerships to address Climate Change. Peruse Dr Leslie’s “Partnering for … Continue reading

Browse the IDRC Davos 2014 Outcomes Report

Global Risk Forum

The outcomes of the 5th International Disaster and Risk Conference (IDRC) Davos 2014, which was held from 24th -28 thof August in Davos, Switzerland, is now available.

The Outcomes Report is now available for download and consists of two major parts. Part I provides a summary of the findings of the post-conference expert workshop with focus on science and technology, education and training, and implementation (workshop participants are listed in the annex part III).

Part II shows all the various comments which have been provided by the IDRC Davos 2014 participants to the pre-zero and the zero draft concept. The comments are listed according to the numbering used in the existent zero draft. Many comments are very much in-line with the existent draft and might also serve for confirmation purposes of the existent zero draft.

The outcomes of the IDRC Davos 2014 expected to serve as a science & technology input for the post-2015 framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (HFA2) and provide recommendations towards the UN World Conference WCDRR in Sendai, Japan.

The next IDRC Davos conference will be held from 28 Aug. – 1st Sept. 2016.

IDRC 2014 Presentations and Proceedings

You missed a session or the entire event? – All presentations are still available online.

Plenaries and keynotes have been recorded and can be watched as video stream. Parallel session abstracts and presentations can also be read online. Explore our interactive conference review!

Explore the Interactive Review!
Credit: Global Risk Forum
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,038 other followers

%d bloggers like this: