In the spring of 2017, IDB launched a climate change mitigation pilot project to support the installation of energy efficient lighting technology in public buildings in Harbour Island, Bahamas. This pilot project was selected through an extensive process that included a professional cost-benefit analysis, cost-effectiveness analysis, and a multi-criteria analysis with input and feedback from key stakeholders in the Bahamas, and more specifically from Harbour Island. Like many island nations, the Bahamas energy source is 100% reliant on the use of fossil fuels. While their current energy cost falls in line with the Caribbean average at $0.32 USD per kWh of electricity, their complete dependence on fossil fuels leaves the nation vulnerable to fluctuations that directly impact the cost of electricity. Currently, there has been little experimentation with renewable energy forms, but the nation is enacting energy efficiency support mechanisms such as appliance labeling standards, tax credits, and national energy efficiency standards. The principle goal of this pilot project is to increase the awareness and use of high energy efficiency technologies in Harbour Island in line with the Nationally Determined Contributions to climate change mitigation (NDC) of the Bahamas.
On April 11, 2017, a multi-stakeholder meeting was held at the Office of the IDB in Nassau, to review, validate, and select the pilot project for Harbour Island. The consultation meeting was attended by critical stakeholders including the Ministry of Tourism, the Bahamas National Trust, the Ministry of the Environment, the BEST Commission, the Civil Aviation Department, and the Road Traffic Department. This process resulted in the selection of the climate change mitigation intervention related to the installation of energy efficient lighting technology in public buildings in Harbour Island. The pilot project is implemented in Harbour Island to showcase the potential for reducing the level of emissions currently associated with lighting in building spaces running on power from fossil fuels. An additional benefit of implementing the project in Harbour Island is that it is an important tourist destination in the Bahamas, and with the collaboration of energy providers through a visual monitoring system, the performance of the new LED light bulbs to visitors on island tours how the Government of the Bahamas is committed to promoting and demonstrating how energy efficiency technologies can be deployed in a practical manner.
The project was accomplished by replacing conventional lightbulbs with high energy efficient LED lightbulbs in select public buildings across Harbour Island. A walkthrough lighting audit was performed on a number of Government Buildings both in the day to determine the quantity and type of LED bulbs required and at night time to determine the use of the lighting in the after-hours. For the removed lightbulbs, special consideration is taken for appropriate disposal of the lightbulbs to avoid fugitive emissions and other forms of pollution such as the sourcing of a “bulb crusher” for proper collection and adequate disposal. Also, the CCSIP team will prepare and execute training and capacity building in the use, maintenance, and responsible disposal of the new LED lightbulbs to ensure continuous proficiency of the electricity technicians. Finally, through collection of data on the net energy consumption reduction, the cost savings and GHG reduction can be determined. Sharing this data and explaining the outcomes creates increased awareness among the population and visitors to Harbour Island resulting in possible changes in consumption behavior.