Power Mad

Submitted by Beresford
Clare Cowan, CEO of Cahill Energy

Clare Cowan, CEO of Cahill Energy

Cahill Energy (Barbados) unwittingly flung the cat among the pigeons at their Community Meeting this week in a most unexpected way. Apart from their woefully inadequate response to clearly well informed citizens, they exposed the weakness and confusion in the Government’s energy policy.


National energy security is not about creating a legacy for somebody. Neither is it something that should be bought from or sold to the highest bidder. A national energy policy for Barbados should consider reliability, cost and sustainability. It should provide certainty for suppliers, distributors and consumers through a transparent legal framework and clear policy directives.

What have we seen in recent times under the DLP Administration? First the reintroduction of a virtual monopoly in petroleum distribution by The Sol Group, which will culminate in the purchase of the Barbados National Terminal Co. in a private deal that was not subject to open bids. Nobody knows what benefits will accrue to the state from this sale or what agreements will bind the Government going forward.

The government has flattered to deceive in the renewable energy sector. It first encouraged Barbadian entrepreneurs and householders to get into solar voltaic energy and then not only taxed them for their efforts, but also neglected to put the requisite system in place to allow them to license and therefore operate their systems. The result was the cancellation of some multi-million dollar orders, with the ensuing loss of investment, jobs and longer term saving of foreign exchange on imported energy.

After all the brouhaha about green energy, which was really only a rebranding of the BLP’s Green Economy, we endured a very public spat between the Minister of Agriculture and the Minister of Finance about the financing of a new $500 million sugar factory which would double as a significant producer of renewable energy via the cane industry.

Those of us old enough to remember will know that this policy of feeding excess electricity to the national grid and the manufacture of chipboard from bagasse was championed by Tom Adams Administration way back in the first half of the 1980’s and abandoned when the DLP returned to office in 1986. There is really very little new under the sun.

The Minister of Finance had no problem however in siding with the Ministers of Energy and the Environment in accepting the unsolicited Cahill waste to energy proposal that will see Government buying electricity for 45 cents a kilowatt against the 19 cents it is presently costing the Barbados Light & Power. Guess who will have to pay for the difference? Four DLP Ministers have indebted us to the tune of $4.3 billion over the next 30 years, by which time they will have ridden off into the sunset and been drawing their pensions for over two decades.

Can anybody in this ragtag Cabinet tell the people of Barbados why they have lagged for six months on a proposal by Deltro Electric of Canada to set up a $150 million solar energy farm with a jump start of $40 million from the Canadian government? Is it because the deal with Cahill is in some way sweeter?

It is clear there needs to be a coordinated national energy policy fit for the 21st century that all the stakeholders, including consumers, are acquainted with. This ad hoc ‘every man for himself’ approach is not good for the country and will likely result in wasting or duplicating precious resources.

The family of the Barbados Labour Party extends our sincere sympathy to the family of Lady Springer, much loved widow of one of our founding fathers and national hero, Sir Hugh Springer.

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22 Comments on “Power Mad”

  1. Caswell Franklyn August 2, 2015 at 1:58 AM #

    The BLP’s prosecution of this massive corrupt deal is halfhearted at best. That is because of the skeletons in their own closets. This project should have been put out to public tender. According to Government’s rules anything valued over $100,000 must be put out to public tender, unless there is only one supplier of the good or service in the market. The BLP should have been able to institute action on that score but are constrained to do so because they did not tender for the prison, and did not want to bring attention to themselves.


  2. David August 2, 2015 at 2:02 AM #

    The MoF is on record suggesting the procurement policy doesn’t require a PPP to be tendered. The argument is Cahill is using their money.

    The other point is why did BL&P (EMERA) not enter the debate earlier given its earlier research in plasma gasification.


  3. Caswell Franklyn August 2, 2015 at 2:11 AM #


    The Minister is on record as being economical with the truth. Even if the Cahill is using its own money, the project should have been put out to tender so that other people would have had the opportunity to use their own money. Who’s to say that this is the best option? This is corruption just like Dodds Prison and SBRC.

    Sent from my iPad



  4. David August 2, 2015 at 2:14 AM #


    Barbados Today's photo.


  5. Violet C Beckles August 2, 2015 at 4:26 AM #

    Well the BLP have their Massive Land Fraud and DLP looking to see who’s fraud is Bigger and who can make the most money in their own pockets, Never have we seen any big money deal was ever save the public any money , Its cost everyone every time year after years as these crooks, liars and scumbags rape and kill Bajans and Barbados,

    Well you can not say Caswell nor PLANTATION DEEDS, WELL WELL, LOOK, BUSH TEA and a few others not warn the people of Barbados of the type of Niggers selling of the people of Barbados,as we say all the time MORE PAIN TO COME,

    The white boys of Barbados never see the little white woman coming to town with out side US DOLLARs put the local crooks out of business, Now they were sold by the niggers in government to the to richer whites ,, white slavery for those who used to be masters of crime in Barbados now are slaves them self and no BLP to help them.Wasted vote buying money, Now where are the title deeds for all that and needed to rape the Bajans,?

    Clear Title anyone? Massive Land Fraud goes on,Vote Better Next time,


  6. YAACOTU August 2, 2015 at 6:59 AM #

    Would the tendering process apply if an investor approaches the GOB with an investment proposal for consideration?


  7. This is Barbados August 2, 2015 at 7:25 AM #

    David, do you know who own’s the Caesar’s Army event and the purpose for having the event at the same time as the national Foreday Morning Jam?



  8. Caswell Franklyn August 2, 2015 at 7:26 AM #


    YES! Those who approach the Government would have to prove that their solution is the best.



  9. Wacker plate August 2, 2015 at 7:35 AM #

    There are no investors
    The Cahill woman has spent the past 16 months looking to get investors
    If it was tendered the way it should have been there may be investors now.
    She had been given this opportunity on a golden platter and is now at the end of the line still without investors
    Single sourcing this project is against the purchasing protocols and the public interest.
    To say it won’t cost the gob anything is a nonsence
    There’s $50m in infrastructure and equipment to be purchased to make this thing work.
    For it to be free there would have to be another amendment to the contract to state that the required infrastructure outside the battery limit will be part of the deal and that additional capital cost could be captured by an increase in the $$$ per kilowatt hour
    This is an ilconceived nonsence.


  10. Sandy lane August 2, 2015 at 7:41 AM #

    Where is the single source justification form outlining the overwhelming need to sign this agreement with Cahill???
    No self respecting company or government purchasing department would single source something like this without the correct sinsle sourcing forms being completed and approved.


  11. David August 2, 2015 at 7:43 AM #

    Please stick to using one moniker, final warning.


  12. Hants August 2, 2015 at 9:39 AM #


    Nice photo of that loving couple. lol


  13. David August 2, 2015 at 10:00 AM #


    That is a political relationship to watch. It maybe Donville’s ”out”.


  14. David August 2, 2015 at 10:29 AM #

    David, do you know who own’s the Caesar’s Army event and the purpose for having the event at the same time as the national Foreday Morning Jam?


    It is yet another Trini fete.


  15. FBI August 2, 2015 at 5:48 PM #

    CHECK; http://www.zoominfo.com/p/M.E.-Cowan/1846327424





  16. Big Brown August 2, 2015 at 8:14 PM #


    Were there not two proposals for the prison evaluated by the Technical Committee? Get the facts, man.


  17. Bush Tea August 2, 2015 at 10:27 PM #

    Two proposals were evaluated …and the higher one, submitted by a company that never built a prison before, was accepted…
    Corruption exemplified…what is wrong with what Caswell said….?


  18. Colonel Buggy August 8, 2015 at 5:12 PM #

    And the Minister had no idea if the proposal was in Bajan or Yankee dollars. What a load of jokers, x 2.


  19. Hants August 8, 2015 at 5:34 PM #

    Beresford wrote “a proposal by Deltro Electric of Canada to set up a $150 million solar energy farm with a jump start of $40 million from the Canadian government?”



  20. Hants August 8, 2015 at 5:36 PM #

    Barbados is a land of glorious opportunity.


  21. David August 8, 2015 at 5:42 PM #

    Do we give Trump a chance to win the Republican primary? Hilary, woman, will be smiling.


  22. Gabriel August 8, 2015 at 5:54 PM #

    I am hoping Trump hangs in there and give ’em (GOP)hell.


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