BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) has announced that it will provide USD16 million in funding to the Dominica Electricity Services Limited (DOMLEC), to assist with the restoration of electricity generation services. On March 22, 2018, the bank’s board of directors approved the provision of a loan of US$15.8 million and a grant of US$200,000 to restore DOMLEC’s transmission and distribution system as well as in improving the company’s resilience to climate change.
Dominica’s electricity sector was severely affected by the passage of Hurricane Maria in September 2017, with approximately 75 percent of the network being destroyed or damaged. As during January 2018, less than 20 percent of electricity services had been restored.
“In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Maria, Dominica was completely without electricity services. We know that the provision of electricity is critical to the social and economic well-being of citizens and residents of the island. DOMLEC has been working diligently to restore service to the island and this project aims to support those efforts and accelerate the pace of reconstruction,” said Daniel Best, director of projects, CDB.
The project has several components, including:
• Infrastructure works: Reconstruction of the transmission and distribution system, including the replacement of utility poles and distribution lines. Light-emitting diode (LED) streetlights will be installed and a 300ft river defence system constructed at the Sugar Loaf distribution plant.
• Engineering services: This includes consultancy services to work with installation crews to assist with soil analysis to ensure correct placement of poles, develop guidelines for the installation of transmission systems, as well as providing technical support for the damage analysis.
• Institutional strengthening: Long-term climate resilience measures for the electricity sector will be informed by a climate vulnerability risk assessment, conducted under this project. In addition, there will be an organisation review conducted at DOMLEC to evaluate internal capacity and propose measures to address gaps.
Funding includes resources provided by the European Investment Bank (EIB) to CDB under the ‘Climate Action Line of Credit’, as well as funds provided by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) under the CDB/IDB ‘Sustainability Energy Facility for the Eastern Caribbean’.
The project is aligned with CDB’s strategic objective of supporting inclusive and sustainable growth as well as development through promotion of environmental sustainability.