The Ministry of Energy and Mines (MEM) and the Government of the United States, through its Agency for International Development (USAID), held a meeting with representatives of government entities of the national electricity sector to promote a culture of saving and efficient use of electricity in the country.
Through focus groups for the collection of information, the experts contributed their knowledge and points of view on the beneficiaries for the positioning of key messages to educate on the appropriate use of energy resources. This, in order to demystify erroneous patterns of electricity consumption and expand awareness levels on the importance of the appropriate use and consumption of these resources for the reduction of greenhouse gases and the fulfillment of the commitments assumed in terms of climate change.
In this sense, working groups were defined to identify the channels to place these messages, the tools and institutions suitable for these purposes and the mechanisms of articulation between all the entities that make up the sector for their implementation and monitoring.
The inputs validated in the focus groups will be the baseline for the design of what will be the “National Awareness and Communication Plan on Energy Saving and Efficiency”, which will be promoted by the MEM, as the governing body of the energy policy, with technical assistance from the “USAID Project for the Energy Sector Reform”.
The Vice-Minister of Energy Saving and Efficiency, Alfonso Rodríguez, who headed the event on behalf of Minister Antonio Almonte, highlighted the importance of the participation of the entire electricity sector in the promotion of energy saving and efficiency in the country, and recalled the need for the approval of the Energy Efficiency Law, whose bill was approved in the Senate and is currently before the Chamber of Deputies.
He said that this workshop is an exercise for the elaboration of the Energy Saving and Efficiency Plan, which will allow the governmental actors of the sector to have contact with society and be able to present this tool and thanked USAID for the support it provides to the Dominican State to have a more efficient electricity service.
For his part, USAID Acting Deputy Director Javier Castano emphasized the commitment of both countries to the efficient use of energy and the support of his nation within the framework of the U.S.-Caribbean Partnership to Address the 2030 Climate Crisis (PACC 2030). He assured that the meeting “represents the commitment of our two countries to collaborate to build a more sustainable future in which more people have access to reliable and affordable energy.”
He added that through the Energy Sector Reform project, “USAID seeks to collaborate with the Dominican Republic and other Caribbean countries to strengthen their energy systems, thereby creating the conditions for greater energy independence, more productive and diverse economies, and greater resilience to natural and market phenomena”.
In addition to this assistance for the promotion of energy savings and efficiency, the USAID Energy Sector Reform project facilitates the training of energy sector actors in cybersecurity, the updating and expansion of studies to strengthen energy resilience in the country, and the training of financial institutions in green and sustainable investments for the strengthening and modernization of the Dominican energy sector. This project has an investment of USD 10.8 million from the Government of the United States.
This meeting is part of the ongoing work of the Ministry of Energy and Mines to promote a culture of energy efficiency throughout the country in the long term. Likewise, last December 2022, MEM became the first institution in the Dominican Republic and the Caribbean to obtain the ISO 50001:2018 international standard certification for energy management, which provides the most robust framework for optimizing energy efficiency in public and private sector organizations.
In addition to Vice Minister Rodríguez, there were Andrés Portes, manager of EDEESTE; Miguel Díaz, vice minister of Mining; Charly de la Rosa, director of the USAID Energy Sector Reform Project; and Alfredo Kramarz, MEM Communication advisor.
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