THE CARICOM SECRETARIAT AND THE CCREEE LAUNCH ENERGY INNOVATION CHALLENGE

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17 January, 2020, Bridgetown – The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat and the Caribbean Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (CCREEE) have launched the CARICOM Energy Innovation Challenge.

The Challenge – which is open to teams of primary and secondary school students – invites submissions detailing students’ interest in Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) and the importance of a STEAM lab to their school, community and everyday life. Secondary students are being asked to design novel concepts for use and management of the STEAM Centre.

The best proposal for bringing the STEAM Centre and student network to life will determine the first pilot CARICOM STEAM Centre. Remarking on the Challenge, CCREEE’s Executive Director Dr. Gary Jackson said, “this competition is very much in line with CCREEE’s mission and mandate to transform the Caribbean energy landscape. The STEAM Centres planned for the region will feature sustainable energy and climate technologies, such as rainwater harvesting and wastewater treatment, on-site power generation from renewable sources and distribution to neighbouring households and facilities through a micro-grid.”

In tandem, Dr. Devon Gardner, Head of the Energy Unit within the CARICOM Secretariat added, “Mini-grids will be an important component of these STEAM Centres. We hope that the establishment of the STEAM Centres will also address issues related to the participation of women across a range of careers within STEAM disciplines, with a special focus on energy. CCREEE, as a part of the CARICOM family, will ensure that underserved areas in CARICOM territories will have improved energy access, as a key element of their new strategic plan.”

CCREEE was established as the implementation hub for sustainable energy activities and projects within the region, attaining its legal personality in May 2018. It is recognized that the solution to many of our sustainable development challenges of our region is through access to clean, affordable and reliable energy services which are fundamental to reducing poverty, promoting economic growth and enhancing competitiveness.

Details of the submission process for the CARICOM Energy Innovation Challenge can be found on the CCREEE website: www.ccreee.org. All submissions must be made by 8 February, 2020.

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