Barbados Giving Oil The Cold Shoulder

Country Overview

The island nation of the Republic of Barbados is in the Lesser Antilles of the West Indies and is bordered by the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. The population of Barbados is approximately 282,150 people.

Barbados became a British colony in 1625 and a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy in 1966, On November 30, 2021, Barbados became a republic.

In 2022, Barbados’s economy was ranked 147th in the world in gross domestic product (GDP). The country’s economy is dependent on tourism and the export of  hard liquor, passenger ships, cargo ships, packaged medicaments, cement, and paper labels.

Environmental Policies

In 2016, Barbados signed the Paris Climate Agreement, committing to a 44% economy-wide emissions cut in 2030, compared to business as usual.

In 2017, Barbados enacted the National Energy Policy, which requires state utility to generate 100% of its power from renewable energy and for the nation to be carbon-neutral by 2030.

Power Generation Capabilities

In 2021, 100% of the people in Barbados had access to electricity. In 2021, the Barbados Light & Power Company Limited used refined petroleum (92.5%) and renewable energy (7.5%) to generate electricity across the island nation. Solar is the dominant type of renewable energy used to generate electricity in Barbados.

Renewable energy developments in Barbados include:

60 MW Solar Projects – In November 2023, German company Jurchen Technology and Barbados renewable energy company Blue Circle Energy commenced work on a portfolio of solar generation projects across Barbados’ eleven parishes.  The total capacity of all the solar projects is 60 MW.

10 MW Solar Project – In September 2016, Barbados Light & Power Company commissioned  the Saint Lucy Solar Photovoltaic Park at a site north of the nation’s capital, Bridgetown.


Barbados imports refined petroleum and crude oil for power generation and transportation. In 2021, Barbados imported  U.S. 331 Million of refined petroleum and U.S. $277 Million of crude oil.

On 24 February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, prompting the European Union, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand to place economic sanctions on Russian imports and exports. As a result, the crude oil and natural gas prices increased by over 50% from May 2021 to May 2022.

Barbados has significant undeveloped renewable energy resources including solar, onshore wind, offshore wind, and biomass. The cost of importing expensive fossil fuels is accelerating Barbados’s move to low-cost, reliable renewable energy.

Jack Kerfoot

Website “Our Energy Conundrum”


Jack Kerfoot is a scientist, energy expert, and author of the book FUELING AMERICA, An Insider’s Journey and articles for The Hill, one of the largest independent political news sites in the United States. He has been interviewed on over 100 radio, podcast, and television stations from New York City to Los Angeles on numerous energy related topics.

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