As a country with an abundance of sunshine, The Bahamas is slowly but surely taking advantage of all the benefits that come along with solar energy in terms of improving the country and livelihood of its citizens. In fact, The Bahamas has about 340 sunny days a year! As people begin to look for more sustainable ways to reduce energy consumption and save on costs, more individuals and companies in The Bahamas are opening their eyes to all the possibilities solar energy can bring.
Cutting Down the Electric Bill
The residential real estate industry has seen an uptick in solar-powered homes throughout the years, with some homes even going completely solar, like this home on Paradise Island which was recently sold by Bahamas Realty agent, Andrea Brownrigg which is completely powered by its own solar grid.
Homeowners have recognized the positive impact solar energy can have on their cost savings in the long run. For many homes, the electricity bill makes up a large portion of the expenses so when the energy costs are cut, money will be saved. In addition, the rising energy costs make the transition to solar energy a no brainer for so many homeowners. Even a smaller solar panel for hot water can produce significant savings for the average household.
Commercial Properties Benefit from Financial Savings and More
Commercial companies like NAI Bahamas Realty Commercial have started making the transition to more sustainable energy solutions by changing out light bulbs to LED, replacing HVAC units with energy-efficient ones, and having programmable thermostats in offices. Although these changes may seem small compared to installing full-blown solar panels, these efforts have led to 25% average savings in energy across the buildings that NAI Bahamas Realty Commercial manages.
“Many office buildings in The Bahamas are older, and most are multi-tenant buildings. Achieving energy efficiency in these spaces has its challenges. We work with landlords and tenants to help them make practical changes to reduce energy waste which benefit both parties in the long run,” said Donald Martinborough, CEO of Bahamas Realty and NAI Bahamas Realty Commercial
Not only are there direct financial benefits of a green, efficient space, but embracing green energy ideals can have positive impacts on a company’s brand and community relations. The added benefit? A strong relationship between tenant and landlord and a more attractive commercial space for future tenants.
“When renovating or building out a new space, tenants and landlords have a great opportunity to collaborate and go green. Relatively small changes in the design and build-out of the space can have a big impact on its energy efficiency and sustainability,” said Martinborough.
The Bahamas Goes Green
The solarized project forged between the government of The Bahamas and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is an agreement signed in 2017 to “accelerate sustainable development” in The Bahamas. This $4 million dollar aims to save The Bahamas $350 thousand dollars and annually offset over 800 tons of carbon emissions by displacing thousands of litres of diesel fuel with a grid-tied solar system.
Similar to the agreement signed in 2017, Bahamas Power & Light (BPL) launched the Family Island Solar Program with support from the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) and Carbon War Room’s Islands Energy Program. This program proposes to develop “solar-fueled power systems” on the Family Islands of Andros, Bimini, Eleuthera, and Inagua with hopes of meeting 30% of the electricity by the year 2030.
What changes are you making to move toward a greener, more energy-efficient environment?
Contact us to learn more about our commercial property management solutions, and how we can offer guidance in a green build-out.