Jamaica News: In an effort to reduce the cost of energy for consumers in Jamaica, the Ministry of Science, Energy and Technology is aiming to add 2,500 megawatts (MW) to Jamaica’s energy-generating capacity from renewable energy technologies in the next 25 years, through the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP).
The IRP is a short, medium and long-term plan for Jamaica’s electricity generation sector. It outlines the timelines for retiring old and inefficient generation plants, and for their replacement with clean and renewable energy solutions.
The work from the IRP is expected to reduce Jamaica’s dependency on imported fuel for electricity and retire the schedule for old and inefficient generation plants.
Minister of Science, Energy and Technology, Hon. Fayval Williams, provided details on Tuesday (October 8), during a Press Briefing to update the media on the activities of the Ministry, at Eden Gardens Wellness Resort & Spa in St. Andrew.
“For perspective, we currently have 1,000 MW of generation capacity. Over the next 20 years, we are expecting to expand this capacity by 150 per cent to 2,500 MW,” Mrs. Williams said.
“Indications, so far, are that more than 1,500 MW of new generation capacity will be required over the next 20 years, based on our expectation for economic growth,” she added.
She also noted that renewable energy and other clean energy technologies will be at the core of the development of Jamaica’s electricity sector.
Mrs. Williams also gave an update on the activities of the IRP.
“In terms of the work being done for the IRP, the Ministry has responsibility for planning the fuel sources and the retirement schedule for old and inefficient generation plants. The utility company has the responsibility to plan for the transmission and distribution. Key input is the location of the new electricity-generating sources. The third entity with input into this process is the Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR),” she said.
Mrs. Williams noted that the OUR’s responsibility is to review all the input/actions and have a sense of how what is being proposed will impact prices to the customer.
“Our expectation from all the actions being taken is that Jamaica will be less vulnerable to oil price fluctuations, as the changing fuel mix significantly reduces our reliance on crude oil, and that consumers will see reduced prices as we look out in the near future. We await OUR’s completion of their analysis,” she said.
Source: JIS News