Minister of Energy Stuart Young

Open for Business: Minister of Energy Stuart Young, centre, is flanked by, from left, service station dealer Premnath Dindial, president of NGC CNG, Curtis Mohammed, NP chairman Sahid Hosein, and NP’s CEO (Ag) John Gormandy, as they cut the ribbon for the opening of NP’s newest service station located at the Preysal Roundabout in Couva.

TAKING heed of global trends and demands for more environmentally friendly fuels, Energy Minister Stuart Young opened the long-awaited National Petroleum Marketing Company Ltd (NP) CNG Preysal service station, located at Preysal Interchange in Couva yesterday.

He said, “This CNG network is going to be an integral part of what you all have been trying to achieve in our national provision of CNG, and we must keep it up,” Young said. “Technology has come upon us, and we are now expanding and looking at other areas of more carbon-neutral energy supply, and in particular in the provision of energy supply to motor vehicles,” he added.

Young said the Government is focused on the introduction of renewable energy and as the energy minister of T&T, he wants to push and make that happen.

“The time for talk has passed. The time is now, and I am thrilled to see the first (public) electric charger portal for electric vehicles in Trinidad and Tobago. When this project was mandated, we were adamant to get that started,” he said.

“This is just the first one out of the Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries working alongside my colleague in the Ministry of Planning and Development. We plan to roll out very shortly a policy to Cabinet to push the introduction and focus on electric vehicles in Trinidad and Tobago,” he added.

Young said he plans to take the policy to Cabinet in the coming weeks.

He said, “The Government is also seeking to ensure an increased penetration of electric vehicles in Trinidad and Tobago. With many countries signalling a transition from the sale of new vehicles using internal combustion engines by as early as 2025 and replacing these with electric vehicles. Several car manufacturers have made decisions to cease the manufacture of these internal combustion engines in the near future.”

“The Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries along with the Ministry of Planning are preparing a Cabinet note to seek Cabinet’s approval to open this up with a number of incentives and policies.”

The minister noted that the first CNG outlets were commissioned by NP in the 1980s. From 2013 onwards, the CNG initiative has been spearheaded by the NGC/ CNG Company with strategic partnerships between many public and private entities.

He said the inception of the CNG programme is a benefit to the country, not only economically via the reduction in the liquid fuel subsidy, but also environmentally by significantly reducing emissions of carbon dioxide from conventional transportation fuels.

As of December 2020, CNG initiatives have resulted in CO2-emission reduction of approximately 31,500 metric tonnes from 2014 to 2020, and a liquid fuel subsidy reduction of approximately $18.5 million, Young said. Nationwide, CNG sales stood at 13,530,082 litres of gasoline-equivalent in 2020, which was a 24 per cent increase over 2019.

RECOMMENDED FOR YOU

WITH the onset of Covid-19 in Trinidad and Tobago in March 2020, commercial banks and non-bank financial institutions were forced to improve existing digital solutions or accelerate the development of new ones.

ELEVEN months after Britain actually left the European Union (Brexit), the United Kingdom (UK)is seeking to strengthen its trade and investment relationship with the Caribbean and Latin America by building on its 2019 Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).

THE DEBATE about climate change is over. We have witnessed increased forest fires, devastating floods, and other deleterious effects upon people and the environment from climate change-related events. It is time to accept that we have a duty to reconsider the way we do business.