Caribbean collaboration and the world’s first carbon negative housing community

Partanna Bahamas, a carbon-negative concrete pioneer, is collaborating with the Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator (CCSA), to develop the world’s first carbon negative housing community and help pave the way for the Caribbean to become a global leader in climate-smart infrastructure.

The Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator was incubated by Virgin Unite in 2018 as a standalone not-for-profit, committed to building more resilient countries, cities, and industries across the Caribbean, and creating the world’s first climate-smart zone.

A key component of CCSA’s work is engagement with the private sector and the matching of entrepreneurs and businesses to its network of regional donors, investors, and philanthropists. By partnering with Partanna, a Bahamian start-up, CCSA will help boost climate-smart construction and drive the Caribbean economy’s transition into a climate-smart zone.

Partanna’s carbon-negative concrete has the potential to revolutionise the global construction industry. The built environment contributes around 40% of the world’s annual CO2 emissions. The CCSA will help Partanna to realise its mission and potential by identifying public and private sector collaborators throughout the region.

The agreement comes shortly after Partanna announced the development of up to 1,000 affordable homes with the Government of the Bahamas – a necessary move after hurricane Dorian rendered 29,500 people homeless and/or jobless in Bahamas in 2020. This solution, in addition to meeting the need, will revolutionise affordable housing in a nation at the frontline of the climate crisis.

Racquel Moses, CEO of the Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator, said of the partnership: “Times are few that we have such a unique opportunity to build global leadership within our region. We see the Partanna solution as one that can finally usher in a new age of Global South leadership in setting the standards and by extension bringing within the region the certification process for climate action projects.”

“We need to be smart, avoid the climate catastrophe by unlocking positive economic transformation. Local solutions will be critical to our transition to low carbon economies. By engaging local innovators, like Partanna, we want to lead on the world’s stage, not follow, and with construction being one of the most difficult to decarbonise industries, Partanna offers an exciting opportunity to do so.”

Rick Fox, former Los Angeles Lakers player and founder of Partanna Global, commented on the partnership: “For the Caribbean, adaption to climate change is a matter of survival. With more and more extreme weather events impacting our region – it’s vital we invest today in resilient homes and infrastructure that can cope with climate change. Our building materials offer greater protection, and also suck CO2 from the atmosphere – making them part of the short-term and long-term solution to climate change.

“We know there is simply no time left, and the CCSA shares our urgency. We’re delighted to work with the accelerator and its incredible network of regional leaders, to secure green growth that delivers for Bahamians and the region.”

Paramount to this partnership is a commitment from both CCSA and Partanna to make use of the region’s young talent, and it is hoped that increased use of Partanna within the Caribbean can spark a green jobs boom, in a region where one in four young people is unemployed.

Partanna’s housing development project will provide at least 1,000 direct and indirect jobs for Bahamians over its duration. Partanna will also provide training in the new skill sets required to establish the Caribbean as a global centre of a new sustainable building materials industry.