Mandeville Weekly News


Posted by SR (riley) on Mar 19 2017 at 10:43 PM
Mandeville Weekly News >>

The Government has endorsed a $738.7-million (US$5.75-million) water adaptation project being initiated by the Jamaica National (JN) Group, with loan funding support from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).The initiative will facilitate on-lending of the funds, through JN Bank, to real estate developers to finance housing projects incorporating water-efficiency technologies that yield conservation, particularly within households, through the utilisation of key inputs, including rainwater harvesting systems, water-efficient taps and showers, low-flush toilets, and efficient irrigation systems.

This activity forms part of the IDB’s undertaking to promote heightened climate-change resilience in the housing sector by providing improved reliable water supplies and reducing demand for the commodity. The loan agreement was signed by IDB Caribbean Country Manager, Mrs. Therese Turner-Jones and JN Group General Manager, Mr. Earl Jarrett, on March 10th.
 Addressing the ceremony, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, who has responsibility for water, welcomed the project and lauded the partnership between the implementing entities, noting that the IDB has been pivotal in funding enterprising engagements, such as the adaptation project, in Jamaica’s water sector.

“The project exemplifies the IDB’s attempt to provide innovative financing that will help to make Jamaica more adaptable to climate change and certainly improve our capacity in terms of drought resilience,” the Minister said, highlighting Jamaica National’s longstanding history of innovation and contribution to the local housing sector.Dr. Chang said that the partnership reflects a new approach for consideration and pursuit in enabling the provision of adequate water across Jamaica.
 Mrs. Turner-Jones noted the clear and present danger posed by climate change, particularly in relation to the provision of water, adding that the focus on this area is critical.  “The impact of climate change is becoming more and more evident and soon we are going to start to feel those effects in Jamaica and in this region with even more regularity.  So, anything we can do to mitigate the impact is really important,” she said.

Mr. Jarrett said the importance of water has long been disregarded, with some persons treating it as an unending stream.  “So, part of the objective of this project is to bring a greater level of awareness to what is not an unending supply, but actually a scarce resource that we need to respect and use carefully,” he added.