Member State: Trinidad & Tobago Name: Angela AliAge: 16Form: Lower 6 CSchool: St. Stephen's CollegeSubject: Renewable Energy (RE) and Energy Efficiency (EE) Competition for Secondary School StudentsLying beneath a coconut tree tilted perfectly upon a sandy beach on a cool breezy day might someday be just a dream. En route to the beach we cover our skins in sunscreen for fear of sunburn due to the scorching sun. These days the sun seems to bear no mercy as it pelts down on us during the dry season, clearly temperatures are rising. This phenomenon is called global warming and it is as a result of our indiscriminate treatment of mother earth. Although the Caribbean islands minimally contribute to the causes of global climate change, they will endure much of the brunt of the impacts. These islands which make up the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) are Small Island Developing States (SIDS).Renewable energy and energy efficiency are two definite strategies that work hand in hand and may be employed to accomplish a secure and sustainable future in the Caribbean. Sustainability is based on a simple principle; everything that we need for our survival and well-being depends on our natural environment. Sustainability creates and maintains the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony, that permit fulfilling the social, economic and other requirements for not only now but in the future.We must therefore learn to not only cope with but quarantine and fix climatic issues. One of the techniques with seems to be the most popular one advocated is the use of renewable energy. This is any energy resource that is naturally regenerated over a short time scale and derived directly from the sun (such as thermal, photochemical, and photoelectric), indirectly from the sun (such as wind, hydropower, and photosynthetic energy stored in biomass), or from other natural movements and mechanisms of the environment (such as geothermal and tidal energy). Non-renewable energy includes energy resources derived from fossil fuels, waste products from fossil sources, or waste products from inorganic sources.Trinidad and Tobago is no exception and will also be impacted beneficially by the use of renewable energy. In fact, in May 2013, the Ministry of Energy and Energy Affairs initiated work on the Regional Renewable Energy Centre subsequent to the recent signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between them and the United States of America. Prior to the signing, several revolutionary advances in the spheres of renewable energy like recent installation of solar-powered security lights at nine community centres and a pilot solar thermal project commissioned at twenty-five schools throughout Trinidad and Tobago also the historical initiation of a Wind Resource Assessment Programme (WRAP) which will provoke use of renewable energy.These actions are necessary because in 2012 according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Trinidad and Tobago's net energy consumption was 7.59 Billion Kilowatt-hours. This can be reduced by simply buying energy star appliances and also replacing incandescent light bulbs with energy-efficient halogens, CFLs or LEDs; doing so will deploy the decreased use of a non-renewable resource.Average people can help combat these environmental issues by doing tasks like using power strips to switch off televisions and stereos when not using them because even when these products are 'off', their "standby" consumption equates to a 75 watt light bulb running continuously and the most common one known but however habitually ignored; don't forget to flick the switch when you leave a room.Rising energy production and consumption have significantly increased local Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions such that T&T was ranked as having the 2nd highest carbon dioxide emissions per capita in the world in 2012. As such the government has initiated steps to reduce its carbon footprint. The employment of the Carbon Reduction Strategies Taskforce is used to promote projects to increase local participation in carbon dioxide abatement projects. Also improving energy efficiency of power generators should also allow T&T to reduce CO2 emissions by four million tonnes per annum (pa). This will aid in stopping the depletion of the ozone layer by decreasing the emission of high levels of GHGs.Trinidad and Tobago is on the right path to giving themselves a voice on the world stage for environmental issues by participating in conferences like United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Other SIDS may contribute to global discussion on climate change similarly.Many may describe attaining an ideal secure and sustainable future not as a destination but as a journey. They may infer this because new technologies are always on the rise and to be sustainable there will be the need to achieve a higher standard of efficiency with the employment of renewable resources so that the future will hold a greener prospect. With these distinct ambitions in mind it is indeed true that a secure and sustainable energy future begins now!