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Government eyes solar panels

Government could install green energy solar panels on several of its buildings, it was revealed on Friday.

Lieutenant-Colonel David Burch, the Minister of Public Works, told the House of Assembly that officials had been in discussions with a company about solar panels.

He said the company would install the panels on government buildings and maintain them for a fixed period.

Colonel Burch said: “They would be paid back in the cost savings we get in electricity over a number of years and then the Government will own it.

“We are seriously exploring that as an option because we cannot continue on the path that we are on.”

He added that the West End Development Corporation has already installed solar panels on several buildings in Dockyard.

Colonel Burch also told the House that the ministry has launched a new drive to encourage recycling — starting with Government offices.

He said: “At the start of this year I asked the education and enforcement officer to devise a plan for the implementation of mandatory recycling throughout Government.

“There are over 60 government locations, so the first step was to get buy-in from the Cabinet and the public service executive. That was the easy part. Now it's getting departments to participate and I'm pleased to report that the response so far has been encouraging.”

Colonel Burch said the drive had already started in 11 sections or departments and another 26 were “in progress”.

He added: “We anticipate that the process will be complete by the end of this month.

“We have to do a better effort of recycling and I think we are on that path. If we can get those in Government to actually carry out that process, hopefully they will carry that idea home.”

The minister was also asked for information on Government's work to make quangos more efficient.

Colonel Burch said that progress has been slow, but that the Housing Corporation and the Land Development Company now shared human resources and IT services.

He added that Government had agreed to hire Performance Solutions, a business management consultation firm, to help with the process.

Greener option: Solar panels in Dockyard (file photograph)

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Published March 11, 2020 at 9:00 am (Updated March 11, 2020 at 8:59 am)

Government eyes solar panels

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