The U.S. Departments of State, Energy (DOE), and Commerce, the U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), and the U.S. Export-Import Bank will participate in the Caribbean Renewable Energy Forum (CREF) in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on October 15-18, 2012. Ambassador Carlos Pascual, Special Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs, will lead the U.S. delegation. Policymakers from across the Caribbean, as well as private industry, international organizations, multilateral development banks, and NGOs working to advance renewable energy, energy efficiency, and energy interconnections in the region, will gather for the three-day conference.
Ambassador Pascual will participate in a meeting with Caribbean Energy Ministers and private sector representatives on the margins of CREF and be a featured speaker on the Caribbean Ministerial Roundtable during the opening session of the conference. Ambassador Pascual will stress the value of interconnected electricity systems to increase energy security, stabilize electricity prices, increase access to electricity services, and drive additional investment in the energy sector as requisites for economic development. The ministerial meeting also will include an opportunity for private sector representatives to exchange views with government officials on opportunities and barriers to energy investment in the Caribbean.
These discussions advance Connecting the Americas 2022 (Connect 2022), an initiative under the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas that was launched at the Sixth Summit of the Americas in April. Through close collaboration among partner countries of the Americas, Connect 2022 aims to strengthen regulatory frameworks and promote electrical interconnections to achieve access to electricity for all citizens of the hemisphere within a decade, improving the quality of life of all peoples of the Americas.