The Ministry of Sustainability & Climate Resiliency has launched a new programme to provide energy efficiency retrofits for eligible Caymanian homeowners struggling with high utility bills.
Cayman Home Energy Efficiency Retrofits (CHEER) Programme
The CHEER Programme enabled eligible Caymanian families to receive various upgrades to improve the overall energy efficiency of their home. This meant households around Cayman coul reduce their energy consumption and thus increase the overall sustainability of their homes.
The Benefits of Retrofitting your Home
“Saving energy saves money. These retrofits will help lower the cost of living for people in our community who are struggling with the high cost of electricity,” said Wayne Panton, the then Premier of the Cayman Islands and Minister for Sustainability & Climate Resiliency, noting that strategy 3.3.9 of the National Energy Policy specifically speaks to energy efficiency retrofits of existing buildings.
“The new CHEER Programme is one of several programmes the PACT Government has launched since 2021 to address the escalating cost of living crisis and rising energy costs. Last year, we launched the Electricity Assistance Programme to offer direct subsidies to residential customers with monthly consumption between 101 and 2,000 kilowatt hours – an initiative which benefitted more than 22,000 households across the Cayman Islands. We also waived the import duty on energy efficient devices and building materials; and the Ministry of Sustainability & Climate Resiliency achieved two grants from RESEMBID – the Resilience, Sustainable Energy and Marine Biodiversity Programme – to improve energy efficiency in public sector buildings and Government-built affordable homes.”
Under the CHEER Programme, approved homes underwent an energy audit, conducted by a trained energy professional, prior to receiving tailored energy-saving upgrades such as: insulation, upgraded air conditioning, sealing the building envelope, LED lighting, Energy Star-rated appliance upgrades or smart thermostats.
Resilience Cayman Chairperson Jan Gupta said: “The programme is very timely and welcomed by many families in Cayman who are struggling to keep up with their energy bills, especially as we enter the hottest months. It will also provide us with an opportunity to assist many homeowners to retrofit their homes towards a more sustainable energy future.”
Who was Eligible?
To be eligible for the programme, applicants had to satisfy the following criteria:
- You are Caymanian;
- You own your home and you are living in it;
- Your total household income is CI$4000/month or less;
- Your home is no more than 2,500 square feet gross floor space; and,
- Your monthly energy consumption is 2000 kWh or more.
In its initial phase of the project, the Ministry allocated $500,000 towards energy efficiency retrofits. Once this funding was utilised, the Ministry claimed they would evaluate the programme implementation and consider opportunities for extending the initiative, subject to the approval of additional funding.
Applications for the Cayman Home Energy Retrofits Programme are now closed (as of August 2023).
To learn more about the programme, visit: www.resilience.ky/energy.