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January 17, 2007

Comments

George Woodin

I found this article about renewable energy sources very interesting.

A lot of R&D on this has been done around the world and the prices have gone down on simple solar and wind power generation.

Have you ever been to the Island School on Cape Eleuthera? They have both solar and wind generators, use biofueled vehicles, solar heated water, and have grey water and waste water irrigation systems.

I haven't seen anywhere else in this country with this kind of drive to be this self sufficient in power and water use. I know there are a few small resorts that are into this type of program. Keep up the good work.

Jason Hayman

The complete lack of awareness of energy issues in The Bahamas is absolutely astounding. I am very keen to see Dr. Bethel's new energy policy but I seriously doubt that it will go anywhere near as far as it should towards addressing the real issues.

As I see it there are two fundamental issues in The Bahamas:

1. The Bahamas imports all of its primary energy. This is extremely expensive, not just in terms of physical cost but in terms of its effect on the GDP. Studies performd by the Rocky Mountain Institute in the US suggest that producing the equilivalent of a barrel of oil domestically can add $800 to the nation's GDP. This effect is probably even more pronounced in The Bahamas. If the government was to take a responsible and forward-looking approach it could actually utilise its vast renewable resource potential (wind, solar and marine current) to become a net energy exporter, which would totally change the face of the Bahamian economy.

2. The other issue is that of environmental stewardship. As a a low-lying island nation, The Bahamas is extremely susceptible to the effects of sea-level rise as a result of climate change and must take independent action. To just rely on the actions taken by other nations is extremely irresponsible. The government must take up the gauntlet and join the battle against climate change in a meaningful way.

The Bahamas, because of its high energy costs actaully has a competitive advantege in terms of developing renewable energy technologies that are not yet financially competitive in countries like the UK, as they are currently financially competitive in The Bahamas. This could be utilised to provide an economic oppurtunity and efforts could be made to encourage renewable energy technology developers (particularly in the marine sector) to utilise The Bahamas as a venue for strategic deployment. This would lead to the development of a technolgy cluster with the potential for producing jobs and export earnings.

It is time for The Bahamas to stop being a spectator on the sidelines and create a niche for itself in the new low-carbon economy.

EB Christen

Again, phenomenal article! This is the struggle of our time and the beauty of it is that it combines security concerns and terrorism (depriving petro-dictatorships of oil revenue to fund terrorism), environmental action, and forced cooperation that will lead the government to rely and work with the private sector to effect change. These three cluster points are true for the USA and for the Bahamas.

I was in Harbour Island for New Years and it was charming and beautiful, but there are more 'real' cars there than ever before - can't the government figure out that cars and small picturesque islands like Briland don't go together (unless you are a plumber, contractor or can prove an overwhelming business need). Actually, scratch that, can't Brilanders figure that out - it is their own welfare after all - whatever happened to local government intiatives - that just seems so ludicrously obvious to everyone that was visiting the island that Brilanders should be embarassed they haven't enacted themselves. In Nassau, what would be still a beautiful and charming island, we are choked by noxious fumes and black clouds from the dense traffic and ridiculously disgusting trucks and buses that belch black exhaust over the entire road. When will the private sector and government step up to the plate and realise that we can take back Nassau and make it clean and beautiful again by actively working to lower fuel emissions and move towards a cleaner economy.

This is the 21st century and this is our Bahamas - it is the prettiest country in the world and we need to defend it from idiocy - both government and societal.

I still see people throwing trash out of their cars and littering KFC boxes for crying out loud!

Shape up Bahamaland!

drew Roberts

The government could make a good start by telling people it is legal to generate all of your power requirements by solar, wind, wave, tidal, hydro, etc. (And making it so in cases where it isn't now.)

Then they could take the duty off of the technology that is required to do so.

Is it legal to go off grid in Nassau at the current time? Will the government advertise the fact? (If so and fix the situation if not?)

all the best,

drew

(+1)/10 to send me email

EB Christen

Drew raises a very good point. Centralised control of power could be broken down slowly if it was made legal to go 'off grid' if you could prove that you were doing so with cleaner and more efficient technology. If this could be demonstrated, then a license could be offered. Companies demonstrating the ability to install 'clean' off grid technology would then sprout up and create a new energy sector that wasn't quite in 'direct' competition with BEC. This market driven approach to redeveloping the country's power infrastructure would open up the door to 21st century technologies while phasing out state control of the energy industry - a win win situation for consumer prices in the long term.

larry smith

Any progress in this field requires a national policy - which the govt is supposed to be working on. They just won't discuss it. Must be a state secret.

drew Roberts

To EB,

just came upon this discussoin this morning:

http://hardware.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=07/01/23/0149215

Imagine if they would go even furhter and let you stay on grid if you wanted and "sell" your extra to them when you had it and buy from them when you were short.

To Larry,

actually we would not need a national policy as such, just getting rid of the monopoly laws, even if only for private homes at first. (Not arguing against some national policy, just against it being necessary for progress. Unless you would call something as simple as this suggestion a national policy.)

all the best,

drew

larry smith

what you suggested earlier is the core of a national energy policy - not only allowing distributed power generation, but enabling it with incentives and/or subsidies and actually promoting alternative energy sources.

drew Roberts

"what you suggested earlier is the core of a national energy policy"

Larry, cool. If so, we would do well to start with something as simple as possible as fast as possible and tweak as we go. (Rather than wait for 10 years of paralysis of analysis - something I often suffer from.)

all the best,

drew

drew Roberts

I came across this link today if anyone is interested:

http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/NEWS/0,,contentMDK:21189979~pagePK:64257043~piPK:437376~theSitePK:4607,00.html

all the best,

drew

Donna Thomas

I agree with Jason's comments and each of you ~ where you indicate a growing concern for the amount of noxious fumes that are choking Nassau's picturesque community and putting the tourist economy at risk.

No one likes to see the black fumes pouring out of the back of the bus or jitney that is riding ahead of us down Bay Street.

There should be government mandates governing emissions and perhaps the introduction of tax cuts for local Bahamians that introduce emission savings products that have been proven effective in reducing emissions.

Check out www.tadgergroup.com and click on the Nassau Press Release to learn more about a proven emission saving product that has been introduced into Nassau and is available for individuals, marine, hotels, business (jitney / bus) and generators. The Tadger can be used on generators, diesel and gas engines.

Reducing emissions should be a priority in the preservation of Nassau's grand scheme of things.

Everyone from the government to the home owner should play an active role in leading this fight.

Orlowski Zygmunt

New kind of energy!!!
Clean the air? It is possible. Clean water? It is possible too.
Clean energy? It is possible as well.
My idea is very difficult for understanding. It is not difficult for engineer - mechanic, who knows very good the Pascal's law and even-arm lever.
Please open GOOgle and find metozor and next :
index of metozor.
Overthere is all about idea of main .
example : http://www.nets.pl/~metozor/for_greenpeace.html or
http://www.nets.pl/~metozor/energy_for_everybody.h...
http://www.nets.pl/~metozor/prolog_for_metoz.html

I am inventor and owner of Metoz machine invention. Everyone can take absolutely and legitimate the METOZ invention and build the Metoz machine. I can help only. I can not build METOZ. I am moneyless.
P.S.
The conception of an energy is discreate one to the same as a imbecility. No one has seen the energy and no one has seen the imbecility. We are able to observe results of the energy and imbecility. At present we have got to few energy because we have got to much imbecility.
Thank you for your time and interest.

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