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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

A Firsthand Lesson in Resilience

The OAS Sustainable Cities Course in Miraflores, Peru—an affluent district within the sprawling capital city of Lima—was supposed to take place in March. Then came the punishing rains and floods brought by an especially severe version of a localized climate phenomenon known as a “Coastal El Niño.” The course took place April 19-22 instead, with the importance of sustainable cities and resilience to hazards still fresh on participants’ minds.
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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

An Island Perspective on Sustainability

What does it mean to become a more sustainable community? In a small island country like Saint Kitts and Nevis, it means that challenges such as marine conservation, beach protection, and resilience to natural hazards have a prominent place on the agenda, alongside more traditional urban concerns such as traffic congestion and waste reduction. All those issues and more were on the table when the 13th edition of the Sustainable Cities Course took place May 31-June 3 in Basseterre, the country’s capital.
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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

DID YOU KNOW…

Enough sunlight reaches the earth’s surface each minute to satisfy the world’s energy demands—for an entire year.
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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Project Competition Spurs Creativity

A Sustainable Cities Competition held in Miraflores, Peru, drew more than 100 proposals on how to make that part of Lima even more environmentally friendly than it already is. The competition—held in conjunction with the Sustainable Cities Course that took place in that city in April—ended on Earth Day, with a project fair in a city park. There, the top 10 teams gave presentations explaining their ideas, and the three winning projects were announced.
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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITIES SPECIAL EDITION

More than four out of five people in Latin America and the Caribbean now live in cities. This creates major challenges—more pollution, snarled traffic, decaying infrastructure, rising energy demands, and greater vulnerability to natural disasters, to name just a few—and is prompting local government officials to take the lead on sustainability. In the last several years, the Organization of American States (OAS) has supported such efforts, under the umbrella of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA), through an initiative called Sustainable Communities in Central America and the Caribbean.
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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Countries Prepare for Ministerial Meeting

With momentum building for the upcoming meeting of the region’s energy ministers—the Third Ministerial Meeting of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA)—representatives of 28 countries met on April 20 in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, to discuss their priorities, needs, and potential for increased cooperation. Franklin Kahn, Trinidad and Tobago’s Minister of Energy and Energy Industries, summed up the urgency of the challenges ahead as countries strive to meet their ambitious goals on climate and energy: “The fact of the matter is that the world has to become sustainable,” he said. “When it comes to renewables, the clock is ticking.”
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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Did you know…

Energy is also found in food, and measured in joules. How long would you have to plug yourself into the wall to get the same amount of power as a day's worth of food? Well, the average adult male needs 10 million joules of energy a day. When you consider that your laptop probably charges at a rate of 50 joules a second, you would need to plug yourself in for a whopping 55 hours. But if you were charging yourself at the same rate a microwave does - around 1,500 joules per second - it would only take 1.9 hours. (Source: http://www.sciencealert.com/watch-amazing-energy-facts-to-blow-your-mind)
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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Private Sector Central to Implementing Energy Agenda

A government sets energy policy, determines the country’s long-term needs, and builds a foundation of laws and regulations—but in most cases, it is the private sector that handles implementation. That’s why business will have a seat at the table when the region’s energy ministers meet for the Third Ministerial Meeting of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA).
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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Trinidad and Tobago: An Oil and Gas Producer Committed to Change

Trinidad and Tobago has been producing oil for more than a century—commercial production began in 1908, in a field located near Pitch Lake, in La Brea—and today, 100 percent its electricity comes from fossil fuels, chiefly natural gas. That is about to change, as the country looks toward a future that includes renewable energy sources.
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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Back to ECPA’s Birthplace: Port of Spain

The next stop before Viña del Mar will be Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, where representatives from countries around the region will gather April 20 to prepare for September’s Third ECPA Ministerial Meeting. In a sense, Port of Spain is the birthplace of ECPA; the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas grew out of an initiative proposed there by the U.S. Government in April 2009, at the Fifth Summit of the Americas.
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