The Ministry of Home Affairs is fully committed to preserving Bermuda’s natural resources, oceans, native species, and overall environment. Through a series of conservation and preservation initiatives, the Ministry continues to find new ways to advance the environmental and economic growth of Bermuda. See major actions being taken to specifically address some of the challenges our environment faces below.
- The Bermuda Ocean Prosperity Programme
In partnership with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, the WAITT Institute, and BIOS an MOU was signed to implement a marine spacial plan and build sustainable ocean industries in Bermuda.
- The LED exchange Programme
The Ministry of Home Affairs, in partnership with the Department of Energy, provided local retailers with a stock of LED light bulbs free of charge. The public was able to come and exchange up to ten incandescent light bulbs for ten more energy efficient LED bulbs at no cost to them. This initiative not only saved consumers money in energy costs, but was also a means in which the public could reduce overall energy consumption in Bermuda.
- Reducing Energy Costs
In the 2018 Speech from the Throne, the Government made the following commitment:
During this session, legislation will be advanced that provides greater powers to the Government to reduce the costs of electricity for the people of Bermuda. Additionally, the Government will change the structure of energy taxes to promote energy conservation by replacing the flat rate of tax on fuel imports with a progressive tax based on energy consumption. To increase the uptake of renewable energy, the Government proposes to increase distributed generation beyond the individual level, harnessing renewable energy for use on a community, commercial and utility scale
- The Draft Bermuda Plan
The Draft Bermuda Plan encompasses three strategies; a Conservation Strategy, Development Strategy and a Community Strategy. As a general aim, the Plan places a greater emphasis on the need to encourage local food production, incorporate green infrastructure, improve the walkability of neighbourhoods and build community understanding and resilience to the local impacts of climate change.
- The Elimination of Single-Use Plastics
Using a phased approach, the Government has committed to eliminate single-use plastics by 2022 and the intervening years will be spent educating the community about recycling and reusable items, and encouraging greater sensitivity to the ocean and its importance to our lives. By 2020, a charge on single-use plastics will be instituted as we move to the point of elimination.
- The 6 Megawatt Solar Power Project
- Better protection for Endangered Plants and Animals
The Ministry of Home Affairs is currently working to amend the Endangered Plants and Animals Act 2006 to create a more robust regulatory framework to reinforce its commitment to the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
- Invasive Species
Bermuda is currently vulnerable to the introduction and proliferation of new alien invasive species (AIS) of animals and plants that could have a dramatic impact on the island’s environment, economy, human health and social fabric. The Government is addressing this by developing new legislation to prevent the introduction of new AIS to Bermuda and means to reduce the risk of their establishment and proliferation in order to safeguard the island’s unique natural environment and human health but also important industries such as agriculture, fisheries and tourism.
- Encouraging aquaculture
Aquaculture refers to the farming of salt water and freshwater organisms like finfish, crustaceans, and molluscs. Recognising the continual interest in the production of farmed fresh water/brackish water fish on land, Bermuda is developing a robust regulatory regime that can capitalize on this interest and ensure the production of high quality products with minimal detrimental impact on the island’s sensitive environments.
- Duty-Free Parts for Electric Vehicle Charging Stations and Accessories
- Solar Energy Rebate Programme
The Ministry instituted a rebate programme for solar electricity and water heating installations.
- The Rocky Mountain Institute Project
In Partnership with the Ministry of Tourism and Transport and the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) – the Ministry of Home Affairs signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for two projects that aim to transform Bermuda’s transportation and energy sectors and reduce costs for citizens.
The first project will focus on developing a strategy for transitioning to an electric bus fleet that will lay the groundwork for a full transition of the transportation sector to electric vehicles. The second project will identify and prioritize renewable energy projects and look for ways to build a more resilient grid.