On hand to address the gathering was Jamaica’s Minister with responsibility for Science and Technology, Julian Robinson, who praised the contributions of the World Bank and Canada in supporting the efforts of growth-oriented entrepreneurs in the Caribbean.
One of the eleven 2014 Proof of Concept winners, Dr. Kert Edward discusses his Fiber-Optic Solar Indoor Lighting (FOSIL) project at a reception for fellow entrepreneurs given funding by the World Bank through the Caribbean Climate Innovation Initiative. He also took the opportunity to show the gathering a component he fabricated for his project using 3D printing technology purchased with funding from the program.
Caribbean Climate Innovation Center (CCIC) CEO Everton Hanson announced that a new call for entries by climate-oriented enterprises is being finalized for the next wave of promising entrepreneurs to apply for funding.
Jamaica’s Kert Edward, who has completed a fully functioning fiber-optic solar indoor lighting (FOSIL) system, thanked the World Bank and Canada: “They both have a vested interest in seeing that we succeed. Thanks for the support to bring this idea to fruit.”
Edward’s system will use cameras to map the sky and self-program the position of the sun to collect rooftop sunlight while reducing infrared rays and heat conduction. The commercial version of the system will benefit homes, offices and other indoor spaces.
Robert Wright’s New Leaf Power enterprise is completing another solar project that will bring light, phone-charging and airtime-replenishing capabilities to one of Jamaica’s most barren, sea-swept landscapes, the Pedro Banks. The area is a group of islands off Jamaica’s southwest coast where fisherfolk live for several months of the year without many of the routine amenities of the mainland.
Wright told the audience that the contest gave the group of entrepreneurs the opportunity to cooperate among each other with complementary services. “Some projects,” he said, “work very well with what we’re doing in the energy space. We look forward to working with other entrepreneurs in the coming months.”
Eleven Proof of Concept grants for sustainable energy solutions were awarded by the World Bank Group’s infoDev unit and its EPIC program in 2014 with assistance from the Government of Canada.