IT’S been a few months since last I wrote a blog; I’ve been going through one of these ‘blog block’ phases where inspiration is limited and time even more so. Alas, I’m back and in full effect — at least for the time being — and all for CARICOM Energy Month (CEM2016), which warrants our individual and collective attention, certainly in the region.
The starting point is today — Wednesday, November 16, 2016 at 9:30 a.m. EST — when regional stakeholders will gather online for a webinar titled “Energy Pricing: My Fuel Cost”.
It is to feature a mix of presentations from across the region and discussions among international industry experts, as well as representatives from refineries, marketing and distribution companies and governments.
As the Caricom summary puts it “from gasoline to diesel, kerosene and liquefied petroleum gas, fuels help to power our lives”. It is, therefore, a webinar for all who are interested in getting a handle on the cost of fuel and what they can do to influence the costs.
It is the first in a series of knowledge webinars being hosted by the CARICOM Secretariat in collaboration with Panos Caribbean and New Energy Events this month, to boost awareness of energy issues in the region and help people find their role in charting a way forward for Caribbean energy.
It is being done under the theme “Sustainable Energy for Sustainable Development” (#SE4SD). Nice, right? Well, in case you missed that last hint, #CEM2016 is important for a number of reasons:
- Energy is the new black. It is the subject of now, considerations and decisions about which have far-reaching implications for island economies in particular as well as to the global effort to fight climate change. Think emissions.
- Many Caribbean countries, including Jamaica, are burdened by an enormous energy bill which, if not tackled, could railroad any shot at sustainable development.
- The Caribbean as a whole utilises far more energy than is optimal to produce a single United States dollar of gross domestic product (GDP). CARICOM countries collectively use some 13,000 Btu of energy to produce one US dollar of GDP compared to 4,000 Btu of energy used by Japan, as one example. This is to produce the same one US dollar of GDP and the global average of 10,000 Btu.
- #CEM2016, as we are calling is about opportunities. So yes, there are some weighty issues with which we have to contend re energy, but there are opportunities that exist — including the chance to collaborate with each other to solve some of our energy woes.
So where does all this leave us? Joining the webinar today: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1491162446055247874
You can dial in using +1646-749-3129 (U.S.) with the Access Code: 489-491-389.
More phone numbers: Canada +1 (647) 497-9350 United Kingdom +44 (0) 330 221 0086
Meanwhile #CEM2016 is not only about the webinars. There are a series of other items on the agenda, including a photo and art competition and a regional news reporting competition, together with a number of local-level activities in countries.
Also, do feel free to keep on top of #CEM2016 by following Panos Caribbean on Instagram and @panoscaribbean on Twitter. You will also want to follow @CaricomEnergy on Twitter as well as on IG — and JOIN THE CONVERSATION.