Assessing the feasibility of Solar Tile Technology at Nelson’s Dockyard National Park

Editorial Staff
19/06/2023

Editorial Staff
19/06/2023

Charley Williams MBE, Deputy High Commissioner Bridgetown, Lindsey Thompson, British High Commissioner in Antigua and Barbuda & Ann Marie Martin, Parks Commissioner.

A Study will be conducted inside the Nelson’s Dockyard Precinct to access the feasibility of using photovoltaic tiles to generate power.

The National Parks Authority received grant funding from the UK’s Climate Resilience Fund to embark on the project

According to a statement, the pioneering tiles are taking solar technology and embedding it into common roofing materials which will resemble the traditional wooden shingles used in the Dockyard. 

“Besides the aesthetic advantage of blending into the historical structures, unlike traditional solar panels, these tiles are integrated into the roof structure, making them more resistant to hurricane-force winds.  Each tile is connected by cables to the power distribution board. Photovoltaic tiles combine efficiency with design without compromising the architecture and aesthetics of buildings,” the statement said

If the project is successful, this, according to the Dockyard, will “signal an important milestone for the Nelson’s Dockyard National Park and will chart a path for heritage sites around the world to develop clean energy plans without sacrificing the authenticity or integrity of their sites”

The NPA conceptualize the project to lower the Park’s reliance on fossil fuels, generate electricity and increase financial sustainability. 

The NPA believes that by reducing this electricity bill by switching to photovoltaics would enhance the financial sustainability of the NPA, “making more funds available for conservation, stabilization, and programming in heritage and environment, all while reducing the overall reliance on fossil fuels”

Dr. Christopher Waters, Manager of the Heritage Department at the NPA said the subject of sustainability is a major discussion globally.

I am excited to see Antigua and Barbuda take this bold move towards this effort in such a historic location like the UNESCO World Heritage Nelson’s Dockyard National Park. This first step of setting up the feasibility study is an important one, as the consulting technician would assess the generating capacity of the roof spaces of the dockyard buildings, assessing the feasibility of the historical structures to carry the weight of solar tiles, and assess the risks of putting solar tiles on roofs in our hurricane prone region,” he said

The project is being financed through British High Commission’s Climate Diplomacy Fund/CDF. 

Meanwhile, Lindsy Thompson said “It is important that we act swiftly and make an impact in our local communities as we move towards becoming a climate-resilient nation. The CDF was established to do just that, by creating a pathway to seeing projects such as these come to life. Through the CDF, a total of $37,642XCD will be provided for this phase of the project. We are looking forward to this partnership with the team at the NPA and seeing the successful outcome which will ultimately see such an important project come to life.”

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