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Gov’t considers duty on energy-wasting equipment

PRIME Minister Bruce Golding says the Government as not ruled out levying a tax on the importation of inefficient electrical equipment to help reduce the country’s energy consumption.

Golding was speaking at the commissioning of nine new wind turbine generators at the Wigton Windfarm in Manchester on March 2.

“We purchase equipment that is energy inefficient, and I had actually asked Minister Shaw and Minister Samuda, along with the Bureau of Standards, to look to see whether or not we can’t design some specifications where we may have to use taxation to make the difference. In other words, the air conditioning unit that is using 20 year old technology that burns up a lot of electricity, we may have to put a tax on that so it is as expensive as the more modern ones that use less energy.”

Golding warned that wasting electricity, no matter the source of energy, would continue to keep the country uncompetitive in business. He said that the average Jamaican used more electricity than an average person in China, India and Mexico.

The Wigton Windfarm increased its potential generating capacity to 38.7 mega watts of electricity from wind power. The expansion project was completed under budget at a cost of US$47.5 million and equipped the wind farm with nine additional wind turbine generators. The project also included the construction of a resource building that can facilitate educational visits by school children and university students.

Danish renewable engineering company Vestus built and installed the wind turbines. The entire facility is on non-bauxite lands owned by ALPART and Jamalco. Wigton Windfarm started generating electricity in 2004.

Source: Jamaica Observer



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