I am no expert, but I would have thought that our main climate dangers are from earthquakes and hurricanes, and not from flooding and temperature rises, though it wouldn’t hurt if Road Town were wiped out and had to be rebuilt — maybe higher up.
Nevertheless, our premier sees fit to take a delegation to the COP28 climate summit in Dubai, and to stay considerably longer than the leaders of most of the largest countries in the world. I don’t know what he learned, but he comes back saying that every house should have solar panels on the roof. This presumably should reduce our need to consume electricity from our ever-under-capacity BVI Electricity Corporation. That would mean we would spend less on electricity and reduce the BVIEC’s income for future capital investment, staff salaries and training, and so on.
However, the premier should talk to them. They counter that it’s all very well us using less and spending less when we have our solar panels working. But what happens when the sun doesn’t shine? Unless we also have backup batteries, we will need to buy electricity from the grid. That means that the BVIEC must continue to provide enough capacity to fulfil the demand when needed.
As we develop, more standby/backup power will be needed. But we have not been paying them while we had solar, so they will not have been able to keep up with estimated demand. Therefore, they will have to put up the unit rates, which won’t please the populace or be a vote winner for government. A similar argument would prevail if we were able to get sustainable wind power.
Meanwhile, our government has got its greedy eyes on any finance that rich countries might hand out to poor small countries to finance climate change expenses. Don’t we already charge all visitors a levy for that? We never hear how much is collected, or where it is spent.
Thank goodness Venezuela and Guyana have agreed not to go to war over their border dispute. At least our premier won’t have to draft people into an army to support Guyana. I suppose we are worried about the recent oil finds and our government’s hopes of some sort of revenue from the development.
In local news, we are told that suspended public officers are being “supported.” Why don’t leaders come clean and just say they are suspended on full pay?
We also hear that the United Kingdom will not provide any finance or loan guarantees to assist with the expansion of our airport. That must be either because UK leaders don’t think such a project is necessary, or they don’t believe we can afford to finance it ourselves — or both. Our present politicians must be rueing the day their predecessors turned down the offer of a UK loan guarantee after the 2017 hurricanes. How short-sighted was that?
Former Fourth District Representative Mark Vanterpool reportedly says that if the Virgin Islands were on Nasdaq he would invest in us. I wonder why he chose Nasdaq? He proposes to buy Quito’s businesses at Cane Garden Bay, according to news reports. But did you notice he says he intends to finance the purchase by selling the hotel rooms at $1 million apiece and leasing them back?
Happy New Year, everyone.