Jamaica must move closer to energy independence – Senator Samuda
Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Senator Matthew Samuda (second right), addresses the High Commission of Canada in Jamaica’s Policy and Regulatory Masterclass – The Climate Approach,  held at the Spanish Court Hotel in Kingston, on March 30. Others (from left) are President and Chief Executive Officer, Energy Council of Canada, Jacob Irving; Chair, Energy Council of Canada, Howard Shearer and Partner, Gowling WLG (Toronto), Ian Mondrow. Photo: JIS

KINGSTON, Jamaica - It is critical for Jamaica to move closer to energy independence, says Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Senator Matthew Samuda.

“It is the only way you are going to build that pillar that eventually your economy can be built on,” Samuda emphasised.

The minister was speaking at the High Commission of Canada in Jamaica’s Policy and Regulatory Masterclass – The Climate Approach, held at the Spanish Court Hotel in New Kingston, on March 30.

Senator Samuda noted that the Government has submitted its updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), which outlines the country’s strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to mitigate the effects of climate change.

“Under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), it calls for a particular transparency and calls for governments to submit these contributions in line with how they will help the global targets. Those targets are that we will cut 40 per cent of emissions by 2030, and one of the ways we would do that is by ensuring that we get to 50 per cent renewables in that period as well,” he said.

The minister also pointed to the possible use of renewable energy in large-scale projects.

“The National Water Commission would have announced a project to cover Mona Reservoir with a floating solar system, which will provide 45 megawatts of stable clean energy to the grid at significantly reduced costs,”

Samuda said.

He added that Jamaica also has the prospects for hydroelectricity and significant increases in wind generation and solar energy.

“The Government is very clear that it will engage all three to ensure that we hit our mitigation targets and to ensure that we create stability and reductions in prices for energy, because it’s not just a moral obligation but it is an absolute need for us to be able to create stability economically,” Samuda said.

For her part, High Commissioner of Canada to Jamaica, Her Excellency Emina Tudakovic, welcomed the Government’s intention to facilitate the addition of 200 megawatts of electricity generation from renewable sources to the national energy mix, by local and international investors.

“Canada welcomes this announcement, and I hope we will all capitalise on this opportunity to connect and exchange in ways that will redound to the benefit of both Canada and Jamaica,” she said.


Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at https://bit.ly/epaper-login


  1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper; email addresses will not be published.
  2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.
  3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.
  4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.
  5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.
  6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.
  7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

Which long-term investment option is more attractive to you at the moment?