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Deputy, ROBERT DUHAMEL Minister for Planning and Environment


Energy: Fuel for thought


If Jersey is to demonstrate to the international community that it takes its’ global climate change responsibilities seriously, then consulting upon and delivering an energy policy in 2012 is critical. Jersey became a signatory to the Kyoto protocol in 2005 and one of my key aims for this year is to bring forward an energy policy that can deliver a local reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in line with commitments made by other advanced jurisdictions.


Good progress has already been made in managing local energy demand and I am committed to this critical first step in achieving the goal of an energy policy which is to obtain secure, affordable and sustainable energy for Jersey.


The ECO-ACTIVE Energy Efficiency Service (EES) started in 2009 and has achieved impressive results in bringing energy improvements to the homes of eligible islanders. Vulnerable low-income members of our community are receiving 100% grant funded property upgrades that will raise their levels of comfort, and save them money by reducing their bills. The scheme also brings benefits to the local economy, where jobs in


Page 72 Helping the Planet


this sector have been secured or created as a result of the volume of work commissioned by the EES.


The first two years of the Home Energy Efficiency Scheme have delivered striking results. Installations fitted in the first two years will save 60 million kWh of energy and 13,500 tones of carbon dioxide emissions will be avoided. There will also be a saving of £4 million in energy bills. This means that for every pound paid out by the programme there is a saving of £5.40 for the consumer.


Although hundreds of vulnerable people have already been helped by the EES, there is much more to do. Our programme continues to help those in our original target group who have yet to apply, and the scheme has now been extended to help other socio-economically vulnerable groups. I also want to improve energy awareness in the able-to-pay sector through new and novel initiatives, such as the recently launched thermal image project and a proposed discount scheme for renewable installations.


In the long term we expect that energy costs will continue to rise and, due to geopolitical factors, will


be harder to source reliably. This, along with a need to reduce our consumption of hydrocarbon fuels and their carbon emissions, means that the Island must look seriously at harnessing the potential of its natural energy resources.


The Renewable Energy Commission has carried out a thorough assessment of renewable energy sources and identified that there is substantial potential for the generation of energy. At present, the available technology to harness wind, wave or tidal energy is more expensive than conventionally generated electricity. These technologies, particularly tidal stream technology, are still at an early stage of development and so it may be some time before these become commercially viable.


Nevertheless with growing energy prices and the increased economic feasibility of renewable energy generation there will be a point in the not too distant future when the cost of hydrocarbon energy becomes higher than generating renewable energy from the Island and its territorial waters. We must be ready to exploit renewables and given the long lead in times for these large projects, there are some


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