Jamaica News: Seven public-sector entities have won over $24 million in prizes in the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica (PCJ)/Government of Jamaica (GOJ) Energy Champion Competition.
The annual competition, which is part of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Programme (EECP) being implemented by the PCJ, aims to increase awareness and build capacity in implementing energy-efficiency measures at government entities.
At the awards and recognition ceremony, which was held recently at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston, three entities and one school were crowned Energy Champions after the successful execution of their energy conservation plans.
Participants were required to compare their energy consumption over a three-month span between October and December 2018 to the corresponding period in the previous year.
eGov Jamaica Limited copped the top spot in division one, which comprised entrants with energy consumption of 100,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) to 700,000kWh.
The Ministry of Labour and Social Security emerged winners in division two, which involved contestants with energy consumption of between 10,000KWh and 100,000kWh.
The Ministry of Education, Youth and Information claimed victory in division three, which consisted of contestants with energy consumption of up to 10,000kWh.
Maggoty High has the honour of being the first school to win division four, which is a new category designated for educational institutions.
Each category winner received a $5-million Solar Photovoltaic System, which will be installed at their locations.
The Ministry of Transport and Mining, National Library of Jamaica (NLJ) and Priory Primary School, which were runners-up in divisions two, three and four respectively, were rewarded with energy-efficient equipment valued at $1.5 million.
The Energy Champion Competition includes an individual component, which saw nine persons claiming first-, second- and third-place prizes valued at $60,000, $40,000 and $30,000 respectively, between October 2018 and January 2019.
This was achieved after sharing their energy efficiency and conservation tips on social media.
Additionally, 10 public-sector employees won prizes in sponsored radio shows bringing the total number of individual Energy Champions up to 19 winners across the island.
Science, Energy and Technology Minister, Hon. Fayval Williams, in her remarks at the awards ceremony, said that the EECP has assisted in reducing national oil consumption by 3,500 barrels, helping to save approximately US$2.2 million since 2013.
She noted that the energy competition, since its launch in 2017, “has been met with great enthusiasm and support at all levels, from decision-makers who have to pay the energy bills, to the workers and supervisors who implement conservation measures during their day-to-day operations”.
Minister Williams encouraged all ministries, departments and agencies to “get on board by assessing your energy use and implement strategies to cut your energy expenses”.
Project Manager, EECP, Jody Grizzle, who gave an overview of the programme, said the objective is to realise energy savings by reducing electricity consumption in government-owned buildings.
“We carry out interventions, which will improve energy efficiency, and we target largely the building envelope, cool roof solutions, solar control film and energy efficient air-conditioning systems,” she informed.
Ms. Grizzle further noted that the training of staff is an important aspect of the initiative.
“It is not enough to just install new equipment. Capital investments like these go hand-in-hand with increasing the knowledge of people who use them daily, so they understand how it functions, how to maximise operations and maintain performance,” she added.
The EECP aims to promote cost-saving measures in the public sector through the design and implementation of energy efficiency and energy conservation interventions and equipment.
Over 300 employees from more than 48 entities have benefited from training, with the aim of encouraging efficient and sustainable energy use through conservation measures and behaviour change.
Source: JIS News