Presentation date: November 13th, 2020 at 1:30pm
Location: The Ministry of Energy, Small Business and Entrepreneurship
Background of the Survey
As part of the Public Sector Smart Energy Program (PSSEP), the Ministry of Energy, Small Business and Entrepreneurship is implementing a communications strategy for the public awareness of the Barbados National Energy Policy (BNEP) and its renewable goals for 2030. This strategy will be executed through a series of activities aimed at increasing the public’s awareness of the benefits of renewable energy and energy efficiency, as well as improving the public’s understanding of energy saving and renewable energy methods.
To develop the communications strategy, a quantitative online survey was conducted to examine the public’s perception and knowledge of energy efficiency, renewable energy and BNEP. The survey was advertised digitally and, as a reward for their participation, respondents were given the chance to be randomly selected to receive a thank you gift. The survey was successful, receiving 900 responses from a wide cross section of Barbadians.
Among the key findings of the survey, it was discovered that regardless of sex, age, education, and other demographic differences, 96.3% of respondents consider energy to be very important to them. Additionally, 95.1% of respondents believe they can do more to save energy than they currently are.
A sizable 98.2% of respondents also believe it is important for Barbados to switch to renewable energy. This represents strong public support for moving away from dependence on fossil fuels. Those in favour of transitioning to renewable energy generally felt this would be better for the environment, it will allow Barbados to be more energy independent and it will reduce the cost of energy for all Barbadians.
Ninety percent of those who responded also opined that Barbados should move away from fossil fuels for transportation. The most common reasons cited for this perspective are they believe it would reduce pollution, save foreign exchange and/or lower fuel costs if Barbados adopts alternative fuels.
The survey uncovered that only 34.7% of the survey participants have heard of the Barbados National Energy Policy. Furthermore, on average, even those who have heard of the policy generally believe they do not know a lot about it.
Stemming from the survey results, The Ministry intends to roll out several communications initiatives to further educate Barbadians about BNEP, energy efficiency and renewable energy. The first initiative will be the Barbados Energy Champion Challenge. The intention of this campaign is to encourage every Barbadian to become an “energy champion”, whether in their home, school or office. An energy champion is someone who practices energy efficiency or adopts renewable energy. The competition will demonstrate that anyone can be an energy champion and provide specific, practical ways they can accomplish this title.
November is celebrated annually as Energy Month in Barbados. Hence, the competition will be launched this month. Details on how to participate in the competition and the prizes that can be won will be soon be advertised in the media.
Presentation of Prizes to the Winners
Three persons who fully completed the online survey were randomly selected to receive prizes. Their names are Dario Phillips, Kristen Boyce and Doriel Skinner. Each winner will receive energy saving LED bulbs and a Cost-U-Less shopping voucher. The prizes were selected to help the winners reduce their electricity bill and purchase items of their choice that would be useful to them.
The prizes will be presented to winners during Energy Month on November 13th by Minister of Energy, Small Business and Entrepreneurship, the Honourable Kerrie Symmonds.