NECKER ISLAND, British Virgin Islands, May 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
Saint Lucia signs up for the Carbon War Room's 'Ten Island Renewable Challenge'
Saint Lucia announced its intention to move towards a clean energy future by becoming the next pioneering economy to join Carbon War Room's Ten Island Challenge, today at the Caribbean Conservation Summit held on Necker Island, co-hosted by Sir Richard Branson, the Prime Minister of Grenada, and Premier of the British Virgin Islands.
"Solving the energy challenge and marine conservation challenge in the Caribbean go hand-in-hand. I am very pleased that Saint Lucia has decided to join the Challenge - and hope more neighbouring islands will follow," said Sir Richard Branson, Founder of Virgin.
"We are joining the Ten Island Challenge because it is consistent with the goals of our government to develop a renewable energy sector and transition to a Green Economy," said James Fletcher, Minister of Sustainable Development & Energy, Saint Lucia.
Launched at Rio+20 Summit last June, by Sir Richard Branson, the Carbon War Room and Christiana Figueres, Executive Director of the UNFCCC, the Ten Island Challenge is working with pioneering island economies to reduce dependency on fossil fuels through the acceleration of commercial opportunities on islands, attracting expert engineering firms and investment.
"We want to develop a renewables 'blueprint' using those islands that are ready today - and provide replicable models for many more communities isolated by water, desert or just distance from the grid," said Jose Maria Figueres, President of the Carbon War Room.
Saint Lucia is focusing its efforts to transition off fossil fuels through a range of initiatives from renewable energies as well as waste and water efficiency. Although sustainability and low carbon plans aren't new to island economies, successful implementation is. The Ten Island Challenge will highlight the opportunities on the island and Carbon War Room will reach out globally for the best solutions and most competitive bids. Saint Lucia joins its Caribbean neighbor, Aruba - who signed up for the challenge in 2012.
Sir Richard and Virgin Limited Edition have also taken an interest in the Challenge, offering Necker Island as a "demo site" to launch a Request for Proposals (RFP) for the installation of renewable energy solutions. Issued in February, the RFP has already attracted a multitude of bids from USA, Europe, Asia and the Caribbean, and installation of both wind and solar solutions take place later in the year.
The announcement was made at the Caribbean Challenge Initiative (CCI) Summit of Political and Business Leaders, convened today on Necker Island/BVI. The two-day Summit brings together heads of state and corporate leaders to address the opportunity to protect the critical natural marine environment of the Caribbean region.
Transforming Island energy systems to renewable sources is critical to marine and coastal conservation, and is imperative to the economic growth of the region.
About the Carbon War Room
The Carbon War Room is a global entrepreneur initiative set up by Sir Richard Branson that accelerates entrepreneurial solutions to deploy profitable, scalable clean technologies across industries, and is a registered US non-profit, incubated by Virgin Unite. As a non-profit, the War Room has no vested or financial interest in any of the commercial projects being offered on Necker or other islands.
About Virgin Unite
Virgin Unite is the non-profit foundation of the Virgin Group. We unite people and entrepreneurial ideas to reinvent how we live and work in the world to help make people's lives better. Our aim is to do our bit to revolutionize the way businesses, government and the social sector work together - driving business as a force for good. We also incubate new, independent approaches to leadership including the Elders, the Carbon War Room, the Branson Centres of Entrepreneurship, and (coming soon) the B-Team. Virgin Unite's overheads are covered by Sir Richard Branson and the Virgin Group, meaning that 100% of donations received go direct to the frontline where they are needed most. Learn more at http://www.virginunite.com, follow us @virginunite and like us at facebook/virginunite.
SOURCE Virgin Unite