Demand for Renewable Energy Solutions Threaten EMERA

Submitted to the Innovation Required by Barbadians to Make the Quantum Leap to Survive the Future by The Watcher

Barbados Light & Power wind farm project at Lambert's Plantation abandoned.

Barbados Light & Power wind farm project at Lambert’s Plantation abandoned.

While prices are still somewhat out of the reach of the ordinary Barbadian, there are reportedly in excess of 7000 such installations in private homes now in existence here on the island. That figure scares the living daylights out of the Canadian swine who own BL&P. Its interesting to note that Canadian interest own over 35% of the Barbados economic engine including almost all of our local banks, and they do some of the most vile things here to people. Things they couldn’t dream of doing in Canada.

Back to the deployment of these PV systems. If the current growth keeps pace for the next 5 years, Barbados could see almost 65% of its energy generated by an alternative to fossil fuels. That will translate into a humongous savings in the importation of oil and reduce significantly our foreign exchange pay outs from the country. Problem there is, if PV starts to takes root in that manner, some political animal wont get a kick back and that to them is scary. That said, Barbados was involved in the harnessing of Solar Energy for years. Albeit to heat water. If this industry was seen as viable, had a real champion to drive it, and got some seed finding, we may have been producing solar cells and panels by now.

However late this may or may not be now, we need to start legislating that some percentage of the energy produced and consumed here, is “green”. That means that BL&P had to become compliant with that proclamation, or GO!

They dropped the ball on alternative energy when they allowed the Lamberts windmill to come tumbling down some years ago in July. What a waste! They, based on some rumour, were also responsible in part for the dismantling of the windmill owned and operated by BRC in Edgehill St.Thomas some two to three decades ago. For whatever its worth, Barbados could have invited and encouraged significant foreign investment to the country if the power company was producing energy cleanly and cheaply. Businesses will not only go where there is a cheap labour force, but where energy is cost effective. Actually, businesses will prefer to pay for a skilled labour force is they can receive cheap energy, because a skilled force means less employees, and opens the door for mechanization.

Ah well, we cant cry over spilt milk, but expecting UWI to pick up this ball and run with it to the finish line is tantamount to a millipede playing soccer. UWI is about the display of pomposity when the time comes for graduations. Its a chance for the Chancellor and others to show how great and wonderful they are. I wonder if they would hold a graduation without a single graduand, as this is where they are heading by not providing programs that are relevant to the development of this island.

I could write a book, wait, probably a series of books about our collective stupidity and misplaced prestige, but it would take a lifetime to write as those two characteristics which we embrace are like the Project Managers description of live documents. they just keep changing their form and expression.

Someone suggested that we start small, get small wins, and learn to build on them. I agree. Don’t look to spawn a solar or renewable energy industry anytime too soon. Lets start by getting simple things like regulatory and compliance applied to public utilities, providing value to Barbadians, and collaborating on grassroots projects that save us money.

Then, we can look to do something big. Until then, hear ye this…

Where there’s no vision, the people perish!

41 thoughts on “Demand for Renewable Energy Solutions Threaten EMERA

  1. Pingback: Demand for Renewable Energy Solutions Threaten EMERA - Vibe Audio StationVibe Audio Station

  2. I will simply say this. Things in places like Barbados(small societies by population size) change only when those that see that change is in their favor. They will actually promote that change. It will never be a change for the many that need it, but the few that will/may exploit it.

  3. I recently installed a PV system and experienced great difficulty in having BL&P install the meter. after nearly 3 weeks of calling the individual at BL&P responsible for approving the installation leaving messages for him to call me not one call was returned . In frustration I spoke to one of the Manager’s secretary who informed me that there was a shortage of staff to do the work and that everyone was overworked and to quote her” this is now a Canadian Company and things are done differently, a number of staff are no longer here”. I had to speak to one of the Managers who arranged to have my meter installed in less than 36 hours.

    There is no doubt in my mind that BL&P are deliberately delaying start-ups of PV systems based on information I received. The Govt needs to take the lead in this issue and set the policy not the BL&P. One of the PV suppliers told me of their frustration in dealing with BL&P with PV and had the same experience on more than occasion, however when he needed a new electrical installation approved there was no problem.

  4. I had the same problem about 5 months ago. It took several weeks for the BL&P people to come to install their meter. The EID people were better but they still took inordinately long to do their separate inspection of the installation.

  5. BL&P has stated that it is – my words – “on a go slow” because the number of installations is getting close to the allowable maximum for PV. There is no chance of getting up to 65%; no country in the world is anywhere near that percentage. The problem is that PV generates only in daylight hours so without power storage in homes or on the grid you need a huge amount of alternate generation plant to be able to cope with night-time loads. That’s expensive for the generated amount of power.

  6. BL&P has no interest in PV apart from rhetoric. What they want is a guarantee that their expensive investment in fossil plant will not become stranded by simple, green passive panels on a roof.
    …meanwhile they are not affected by fuel costs – these are passed through to customers… they have been stalling with shiite talk about wind and solar for decades now…while looking to buy more cheap and nasty fossil plant…that use expensive (to the customer) fuel.
    We can’t really blame the Canadians….what would you do if some local traitors offered you a deal to buy a national asset for half of its value?
    LOL….everybody taking turns in foolish Bajans….

  7. EXACTLY RIGHT Hants…..
    So what exactly did Bajans expect when they allowed a few charlatans to sell a century-old Bajan symbol of national success and efficiency to foreign owners – with foreign interests?

    What would be EMERA’s long term interest in investing in Bajan energy sustainability?

    How would they choose between reducing fuel costs to Bajan consumers and discarding existing million dollar fossil fuel assets with losses for Canadian shareholders?

    What would be their interest in developing Bajan leadership skills… except to the extent that it enhances their Canadian assets?

    …does anybody actually believe that BL&P were ever serious about wind or any other green energy?
    …well anyone beside ac and D…that is 🙂

    Unless we are careful, what we will have is another Almond Beach fiasco on our hands….
    …where a high quality BAJAN brand is sold to foreign interests… who extract as much short-term profits as possible to quickly maximize their profits; limit reinvestments to a bare minimum so that the plant becomes run-down and unreliable; and then complain about the high projected cost of bringing it up to scratch; …and who then dumps it on government….and run…
    Of course our brilliant MPs will then seek to buy the abandoned asset for millions of dollars, spend millions more to demolish it, borrow hundreds of millions to build a new one ….
    …..and then GIVE IT to another foreigner to repeat the cycle….
    …brass bowls are gluttons for punishment hear…?

    • @Bush Tea

      Please contextualized your last comment in the context that EMERA has been huffing power companies across the region.

      Agree that NIS should NOT have sold ‘green chip’ shares in a power monopoly. We will rue the day very soon. And for what, 30 pieces of silver to support consumption living.

    • What continues to concern BU is the lack of rich debate around issues like this one. These companies appear to be under no pressure to divulge information to the public. Importantly there is a vacuum where public perception about most issues is so far removed from the reality. Who to blame? We have our pick: politicians, media, ourselves…all of the above.

      But there is hope, the FTC ruled that Walkers Sand Quarry must reduce its price per tonne of sand to $37 from $42 AND Minister Inniss see no issue with the acquisition of FLOW by C&W. In the same media report he laments the lack of regulation of all services provided by telecommunications companies. Minister Inniss is a creature of the Rotary so what do we expect. Go with the FLOW. What a contradiction.

    • @ bushtea.

      Could not be more correct. You must have a crystal ball and gazing into the future. Or you are just a very keen observer of past events in the region and the wider world and especially the “third world cllub of nations”.
      What we are seeing played out in “lil Barbados” is not new. Its the same game perhaps with a different name. History teaches us nothing if you keep reading it and not applying what was gleaned from the past into our present and future actions.
      Humans by nature have the same needs and desires; the “animal” in us has not really changed; over the last 150 years since Adam Smith wrote his basis for economic theory . Greed by any other name is still greed.

    • Is there any meaningful feedback about the OLD turbines at the BL&P Spring Garden site? How does this piece fit into the puzzle as far as efficient power generation is concerned.

  8. @ David
    Anyone can HUFF assets across the Caribbean because we are best at being mendicvnts (adapted from Pieceuhderock).
    A white man just has to turn up bout here with a funny name, wave a few foreign dollars around …dropping a few in the right places …. and we quickly roll over on our backs and spread…..
    …shiite man- CAHILL even tried with a woman..and still the DLP’s panties were quickly off…

    Apart from Charlie Skeete in the USA, (and was he not shocked?) which of our great “economic gurus” did ANY kind of analysis on deals like ALMOND and EMERA? …or the upcoming OIL sales?
    …did Mascoll?, Arthur?, Dr. Estwick?..The Economic society? ..any of the expensive UWI lecturers or graduates?

    What was the book value of BL&P/ Almond when sold off to foreign owners?
    What was the share value?
    Why the difference?
    Who was on the Board?
    What was the selling price?
    Why did NIS sell platinum shares..only to invest in Four Seasons?
    Is not the same thing about to happen with the Oil Terminals /BNOC?
    LAST QUESTION….who exactly benefits from these sellouts?

    BTW….You really expect ‘rich debate’ from brass bowls? 🙂

    • @Bush Tea

      To be fair to Mascoll he did challenge the the sale, remember his calls to Tony Marshall on Brasstacks, they were a few articles as well. His conclusion was the government sold to realise the forex. To support his argument, he took the position the NIS is always looking for long term investments to maximize the return of the NIS Fund, to cash out in a market where only low returns can be had was backward. Tony Marshall has a lot to answer here being a former banker.

  9. Making excuses for Mallet W/o T David?

    Are you talking about the former LEADER of the DLP?
    ..the (former?) CO-leader of the BLP?
    ..the former PhD candidate (now Doctor)?
    ..THE economic Guru according to OSA himself..?
    …the political wannabe?

    …and he “called brasstacks” and “wrote a few articles”..

    shiite man, wuh BAFFY does call almost every day….especially when ‘Peter’ is on…(we gotta watch Baffy…) and does actually talk sense….and where does THAT get us…?

    ..Did Mascoll Organize any protest action?
    ..Did he research the FACTS and DETAILS of the sale – and publish these?
    ..Did he address his concerns to the then 60% local shareholders?
    ..Did he write to the NIS Board and threaten legal action if they sold BARBADIAN assets just so…
    Did he write to the BL&P Board /Management who supported the sale?
    …Did he threaten to compulsorily acquire the assets when the BLP is returned to power?
    …or did Mascoll, as usual, not do one shiite but talk…

    …as to Marshall, he must be shame as shiite after his lotta talk on brasstacks…. Wonder what the school children does be saying now when they pass his gate….?
    He and Robinson want locking up you ain’t know….?

  10. Environment

    Emera is working to create cleaner energy and deliver it to market. We’re doing this in three core ways.

    Investments in renewable generation: We’re investing in wind, biomass, hydro, solar, and have a strategic focus on the future potential of tidal energy.
    Investments in transmission: Because renewable energy assets are often found in remote locations, we’re investing in transmission to collect that power and deliver it to market.
    Investments in natural gas: Gas-fired generation is flexible and supports more intermittent renewable sources like wind.

  11. @ Brutus
    You probably also read the DLP manifesto …and is also suitably impressed with the outstanding work being done in Barbados.. 🙂

    Boss… If you see a foolish girl that you would like to get to ‘know’, you outline to her what you will ACTUALLY do to her? …or do you tell her all the nice things that she wants done for her…?
    See if you can find out what is ACTUALLY being done to us…

    hint…you won’t find such answers in the PR spin, look at the ACTUAL budget and spending plans…..

    @ David
    How can you retire those old inefficient plant unless you invest ($$$$) in new plant?
    Why would Canadian investors put THEIR money in such an investment for BARBADIAN good…?

    That will change when EMERA gets something VALUABLE in return… like a continued monopoly license, increased rates, or more restrictions on alternative PV and wind…..

  12. @ David | November 11, 2014 at 8:12 AM |

    Are you aware of the rebranding that Emera is undertaking in Barbados?

    Soon the “Reddy” kilowatt guy called BL&P would be the 100% Emera mascot. Soon there will be no more Barbados Light & Power Holdings Ltd the holding company for the BL&P trading operations.
    The holding company will be replaced Emera (Caribbean Inc).
    Like Massy expect the next rebranding step to be a complete removal of the name BL&P.

    As has been argued before there will be no massive shift towards renewable energy alternatives unless the BL&P (sorry, Emera) is guaranteed an attractive long-term return on its fossil-fuel based generation facility at the Spring Garden. Remember the Mobil deal?

    Come on David you can’t expect SOL to take up $70 million to save another forex soul for another day and don’t make some handsome profits from the importation of fuel oil?

  13. @ Miller
    ….can you imagine that a “brilliant Bajan manager” sat at the helm of that holding company for decades, drawing a phenomenal salary…. and did NOTHING…..
    …well not quite ‘nothing’… Bushie understands that he did quite well in the share sale….
    …wait though, how come Caswell don’t know bout these things? he only know ’bout public service deals…?

    • @Bush Tea

      Why point at the head? Isn’t the Board a collective? They all benefited from the windfall of the ‘put-thru’ by EMERA.

  14. @ Bush Tea | November 11, 2014 at 7:14 AM |

    Bushie you are always cussing me for promoting the privatization agenda. You even want to put me right behind Peter Wickham in the brass-bowlery lineup to polish his privatization balls.

    Wouldn’t you agree that Minister Inniss must be the biggest brass bowl of the lot for fervently promoting the same thing the hypocrite criticize prior to the last elections. Check page 6 of the “Barbados Today” and see if he is not the miller’s ventriloquist dummy or Wickham’s ass licker.

  15. @Bush Tea,

    Are you aware that the holding company for BL&P has set up a company to sell and install photovoltaic systems? Have you looked at Emera’s annual reports to see what investments in renewable energy they have already made?

  16. @ Brutus
    No!!! …Man you lie..
    BL&P selling Solar Systems?
    wuh shiite man, that would be like SOL selling electric cars…!!?? …or like the Nation advertising BU on their front page…. 🙂

    nah…Brutus, they can’t be so foolish….You probably mean that they building a big solar plant at Trents to try to look like they are doing something…

  17. Brutus
    why would Bushie be looking at EMERA’s annual report? Bushie leave that for Hants, Sargeant and especially Money B….who all probably own big shares…
    No doubt EMERA invests heavily in renewables – ANY forward thinking Energy Company would do so…. But you can bet that such investment are 95% in Canada …and only in their external assets to the extent that it BENEFITS CANADA.

    (wuh that is exactly what Bushie would do too 🙂 )

  18. @Bush Tea – do you really think that Emera is in business to benefit Canada, or am I missing the sarcasm in your tone?

  19. “Canadian swine who own BL&P”
    “Barbados could see almost 65% of its energy generated by an alternative to fossil fuels”

    We Canadian Swine who own shares in EMERA(BL&P) are shacking in our boots. We have an easy solution to the photovoltaic issue, Bajans can have FREE ELECTRICITY while the sun is above the horizon, after dark BL&P Rates jump to $10.00 per kwhr, as an EMERA shareholder when the sun comes back up I’m off to my local bank to deposit my easy earned CASH, suck on those limes.

    Anyone who thinks re-new-able energy in the form off photovoltaic’s and/or wind will ever replace fossil fuel/hydro/nuclear energy generation is, pardon my English, PISSING UP A ROPE.

    Renewable energy can reduce our need for traditional hydro generation methods, however it at present is no where near being a replacement. Take a look at what BL&P are paying for this private photovoltaic energy per kwhr, now take a look at what your paying for energy per kwhr. You should now see that what BL&P is paying is considerably higher that what they are charging, hummmm, does this make economic sense for a sustainable economic model. Check out the following article as it can explain the scenario better.

    FOOD for Thought

  20. @Wily Coyote November 11, 2014 at 6:23 PM “Anyone who thinks re-new-able energy in the form off photovoltaic’s and/or wind will ever replace fossil fuel/hydro/nuclear energy generation is, pardon my English, PISSING UP A ROPE.”

    They said the same damn thing about tow unknown bicycle makers from the American Mid-West. Orville and Wilbur Wright I think they were called. Foolish boys. No sensible people would listen to them.

  21. @Simple Simon

    Your handle says it all — SIMPLE SIMON

    A little engineering know how helped the Wright brothers and it’s top priority in my assessment, go figure.

  22. Some Share holders before EMERA take over
    AG………………………49,012 shares
    PW……………………..26,984 + 1363 shares
    HB………………………18.805 shares
    HR……………………….39,374 +1625shares
    Anglican Diocesan Pension Board….29,629 shares
    Anglican Pension Fund…………………35,641 shares
    Emera ,Castries St Lucia……………..6,592,351. shares…38.44 %
    National Insurance Board……………..3,979,388 shares …23%
    (Jan 10,2011)

  23. “We Canadian Swine who own shares in EMERA(BL&P) are shacking in our boots. We have an easy solution to the photovoltaic issue, Bajans can have FREE ELECTRICITY while the sun is above the horizon, after dark BL&P Rates jump to $10.00 per kwhr, as an EMERA shareholder when the sun comes back up I’m off to my local bank to deposit my easy earned CASH, suck on those limes.”
    Bushie thought it was Money B pulling the EMERA strings, but lo and behold it is Wily C…….well well … come out things!!…
    Well at least you have reinforced Bushie’s point about where the owner’s interest lay…

    But Wily C, you must know that Simple Simon is right…don’t you think that a “little engineering knowledge” can solve the energy storage issue too?
    There are many persons already running completely off the grid on solar and wind boss… those EMERA shares of yours looking shaky yuh… you may need to check out WHO is pissing up the rope yuh… 🙂

    @ Boy Blue
    Thanks for that summary……. @ $28.00 per share it is no wonder that officials did not rush to oppose the take-over, shiite man, we could not even have depended on the power of prayer to save us, judging by the looks of it 🙂
    What a travesty the actions of the NIS Board has been…. what a sellout of Bajan interests…
    What shortsightedness on the part of the DLP government…..
    Where were the complaints from the BLP?
    Where was David Commissong?…. feeding Garcia?

    On the bright side, it seems that some individuals walked away with cash in the millions…. wonder what they paid for those shares…

    @ David
    Bush Tea……..Why point at the head? Isn’t the Board a collective? They all benefited from the windfall of the ‘put-thru’ by EMERA.
    Skippa you is something else yuh….
    …so tell Bushie why we have been hammering away at Leroy Parris then… Wasn’t HIS Board a collective too? …or is it only a collective where the big men are white?
    Can we hammer Parris, Wilkinson, and Barrack….but NOT the “gentlemen” at BL&P Holdings, BOA, or Ionics?

    What collective what?
    ….those “Boards” are specially selected and programmed rubber stamps. They include mostly Lackies who don’t know head or tail what the business is about, and who has to wait on the top man to tell them what to think…

    …you think Bushie got whacker string to waste on such brass bowls in the grass…?

  24. @Bush Tea

    Well at least you starting to understand capitalism, corporations report firstly to their SHAREHOLDERS, the Wily Coyotes of the world.

    While you Bajan politicians and engineers are floundering around trying to develop a practical and efficient way to store electricity, Willy Coyotes off to the bank with another piss pot full of CASH. There is a WORLD full of these “little engineering knowledge” that have been trying to solve this issue for years, to date non have proved effective or practical, but Bajans are going to solve this problem ASAP, good luck. If you do solve this problem you’ll also solve all your immediate and future financial problems as well, that is if the corrupt political system does not bleed off all the cash to their PERSONA bank accounts.

    Just another case of BAJANS jumping on a band wagon without first checking if the wagon had wheels, meanwhile dumb old Wily Coyote is off to the bank with more Bajan CASH, by the way that’s a Canadian bank located outside Barbados.

    • Alert alert, we had a Darcy Boyce sighting today. He promised the Ocean Energy project is in the pipeline. Wonderful coincidence to hear the most silent of ministers speaking out. Are they feeling the heat?

      Also wonderful to hear Mark St. Hill from Innogen launching new products and making the observation off grid items are proliferating very fast in Barbados. Of course this will deflate BL&P’s sales. What will it mean?

  25. @ David
    “…to hear Mark St. Hill from Innogen launching new products and making the observation off grid items are proliferating very fast in Barbados. Of course this will deflate BL&P’s sales. What will it mean?”
    Bushie predicts that BL&P will follow the well trodden Almond path in a few short years….
    …Foreign owners take charge
    …VERY profitable first few years (while plant is neglected and standards fall)
    ….Foreign owners complain of falloff in business (surprise surprise!!)
    ….Government is left to pick up the pieces..

    Then some brass bowl politician will propose that we;
    1 – buy the abandoned plant
    2 – pay to have it demolished
    3 – borrow hundreds of millions (from China) to build a new plant and…
    4 – give it to another foreigner to run… and as icing,
    5 – give them a 50-year tax-free concession….

  26. The Technology Roadmap: Solar PV 2014 shows that the IEA now expects solar to become the biggest single source of energy by 2050. The IEA has doubled its forecast capacity for solar PV compared to previous forecasts.

    Rooftop solar, it says, will account for one half of the world’s solar PV installations, because as a distributed energy source the technology is “unbeatable”.

    IEA: Solar costs heading to 4c/kWh, rooftop solar “unbeatable”
    October 1, 2014 – Author: Giles Parkinson.

  27. xfiles; re. your 8:58 am post, Source URL, if available, please? If not, some more detailed information. Note that over the past week the Emera head honcho has been singing a similar tune.

    Unfortunately, it looks as if Wily Coyote, even though totally wrong in his analysis, will be still heading to the bank.

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