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BREA Calls for Speedier Business in Energy Sector

BREA Calls for Speedier Approach to Doing Business in the Renewable Energy Sector

Amid an anticipated proliferation of investor demand in ground-mounted solar photovoltaic applications, the Barbados Renewable Energy Association has reiterated a call for a speedier approach to approvals by the Town and Country Planning department.

President of the energy association Aidan Rogers applauded foreign and local investor interest in the expansion of the Renewable Energy sector but cautioned against delays in processing of approvals.

“We are aware of instances in which some installers might not have been aware or fully compliant with the various requirements for obtaining approvals, but wish to reiterate a call made in June 2015 for the procedures for approval to be clear to all investors. There is a lot of education and understanding required on both sides and BREA has been pushing arduously for this, and is prepared to work in conjunction with the Chief Town Planner and his team in arriving at a more facilitating approval process consisting of publicly accessible guidelines for ground mounted solar PV installations” Rogers said in a media release.

The President went on to state, that the Barbados Renewable Energy Association was keen to work with all parties and stakeholders to improve stakeholder understanding of the procedures required by the Town and Country Planning department. Williams Solar, a long-standing investor and advocate of local investment in the sector, last week complained of unfair treatment by the Town and Country Planning department, noting it had an outstanding application for a solar farm. The comments coincided with an announcement to the media from Deltro Group, a foreign company, that it had received approval for a 70-acre, 10 megawatt solar photovoltaic farm at Waterford.

Rogers said BREA has worked in the past with the Town and Country Planning department on an understanding of technical matters pertaining to rooftop Solar PV installations and stood ready to deepen its relationship with the TCP and investors, both local and foreign. “The big picture is that Barbados needs to move speedily towards the creation of a 100% Renewable Energy island and the regulatory and licencing processes, which are the starting point for any investment, need to be understood by all and sundry for this to happen,” Rogers remarked.

The Barbados Renewable Energy Association is the island’s sole independent Renewable Energy Non-Governmental Organisation with a mandate to assist in the development of the sector.