‛The increases are coming, the increases are coming’
In or around 1776, Paul Revere was cited as saying “The British are coming, the British are coming!!”
There are some disputes as to whether it should be to him or someone else that those famous words are attributed.
Yet, what is undeniable is that, under General Charles Cornwallis, the British did come. It took a while, but those same British had to sail themselves back to “Jolly Olde Englande” to face the wrath of King George.
In more recent times, the minute the war broke out between Vladimir Putin and sanity, the world as we knew it changed economically.
With Russia being the world’s second-largest producer of crude oil, global oil prices have jumped from $65 per barrel in 2021 to $100 in mid-March 2022.
Well, Ukraine is far away?
Won’t affect anything to do with Bermuda and the rest of the region?
This latest military and humanitarian crisis will most definitely affect us all economically in both the short and long run.
Here is a quote from Kye Rymer, the British Virgin Islands’ Minister for Transportation, Works and Utilities:
“This is not going to be something that I or anybody here in the BVI will be able to control, that is going to be difficult…"
Here is what we can expect:
• Increase in the cost of producing electricity, as our electric power plants rely on imported refined oil
• Increase in the cost of fuelling our vehicles, as they all rely on imported fuel oils as well
• Cooking gas will go up
• Airline tickets will go up
• The foods and goods we import will go up, as the ships bringing them have to use the same type of oil that our power plants operate on
So, to borrow a line from the 1770s, “The increases are coming, the increases are coming!!"
Fortunately, there is somewhat of a “silver lining” to this man-made catastrophe:
• Just recently we saw the arrival of new electric buses that will produce zero emissions and require zero fuel in order to operate
• The Saturn Solar farm in the East End is now operational and capable of producing up to six megawatts, or 6 per cent, of our peak national demands during the time that the sun is up
• Legislation in Bermuda was recently changed by Walter Roban, the Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affairs, to allow for those entities that wish to try out different forms of renewable energy such as solar and wave technology
• Legislation was passed on Wednesday by transport minister Lawrence Scott that gives a 10 per cent discount on vehicle licensing fees to help offset the recent increases in the cost of living
Like everywhere else in the world, we are reliant on the by-products of fossil fuels in order to maintain the standards of living that we have become accustomed to over the past 100 years:
• Air-conditioning units
• Mass transportation
• Tourism arrivals
Essentially, there is no escaping using fossil fuels in one form or another.
It is clear that events both near and far can adversely affect our economies. As a region, we must continue to implement slow but steady increases to our energy supply mixes.
• Christopher Famous is the government MP for Devonshire East (Constituency 11). You can reach him on WhatsApp at 599-0901 or e-mail at email@example.com