Maya Angelou said “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”
This is the goal of capacity building initiatives undertaken through our various programmes and the anticipated outcome of this seminar: to improve the knowledge of participants on the critical issues that will be discussed during this seminar, that is, how we may, as individuals, as a sector and as societies, promote energy efficiency and alternative technologies in the cooling sector in keeping with our national commitments under the Montreal Protocol and our long-term development objectives. This seminar will build on the many actions taking place nationally, regionally and globally to expose relevant stakeholders to information and practices to guide the development of policies, guide our choice of technologies and improve practices within the cooling sector with the aim of minimizing the sector’s long term carbon footprint on our planet.
Like most countries, in Guyana the use of cooling technologies has become indispensable to our daily lives and economic activities. Between 2016 and 2019 an estimated twenty percent increase in importation of cooling equipment was recorded. This trend is expected to continue along with the possibility of dramatic escalation in these numbers in the coming years resulting in a concomitant increase in the consumption of energy in this sector. Cooling, although recognized as an important technology, is also one of the highest consumers of energy in Guyana. It is estimated that this sector accounts for approximately 17 percent of energy consumed worldwide. Guyana continues to take steps to reduce our energy consumption in this sector through the promotion of energy efficient cooling technologies and practices. Given the increasing demand for and use of cooling technologies in our current and emerging sectors, it is imperative that the technological, environmental and capacity deficiencies in this sector be addressed to ensure that growth in this sector does not undermine emission reductions and energy efficiency gains in other sectors.
This seminar forms part of Guyana’s work and obligations in keeping with the Kigali Amendment for the phasing out of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) under the Montreal Protocol. We recognize the need for actions taken nationally through these programmes to be “needs focused and country driven”. That is, proposed policies and actions should epitomize and be reflective of our national goals and long term development strategy. We believe that the areas to be discussed over the coming days are synonymous with our current development initiatives and will contribute to the construct of responsive policies and practices within this sector, even as we navigate this important juncture in our country’s history.
We thank the United Nations Development Programme for their partnership in executing this activity. Partnerships and collective efforts are necessary for the achievement of our common goals and shaping “our common future”. Together, we achieve more. I wish you a successful seminar and fruitful discourse and trust that the discussions over the ensuing days will be a catalyst for actions to address the observed gaps within this sector and provide a platform on which future actions will be developed.