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Strengthening the Energy Sector in The Bahamas… with renewable energy

Hon. Phenton O. Neymour
Minister of State in The Ministry Of The Environment
Press Release
IDB Technical Cooperation (TC)
(BH-T1012) – Strengthening The Energy Sector In The Bahamas

 

The Government of The Bahamas (GOBH) signed two Technical Cooperation agreements with the Inter-American Development bank (IDB) at the end of Mar-09 toward the cost of:

 

  • Strengthening the Energy Sector in The Bahamas (BH-T1012), and;
  • Promoting sustainable energy in The Bahamas (BH-T1016).

 

Under the first project (BH-T1012), consulting firms submitted proposals for the integrated assessment of the Energy Sector and to establish a broad framework for the implementation of renewable energy (RE). This will involve; (i) an operational, and financial review of BEC to ensure sustainability and establish a strategy for expansion including diversification of generating sources, and; (ii) an analysis of the current regulatory framework with recommendations to achieve a sustainable energy matrix,

 

The general objective of the second project TC (BH-T1016) is to promote and support sustainable energy in The Bahamas, including renewable energy (RE), energy efficiency (EE), Waste to Energy (WE) and energy conservations programs, and to provide alternatives to minimize the dependency on fossil fuels. Specifically the project will; (i) provide technical assistance to develop a national EE program; (ii) explore alternatives for RE; (iii) provide support for a WE program, and; (iv) make recommendations for institutional strengthening.

 

Six firms were short-listed under each TC following local and international requests for expressions of interest in 2008. These are listed below:


BH-T1012 – Strengthening the Energy Sector

COMPANY COUNTRY
    DANISH ENERGY MANAGEMENT A/S
    Denmark
    FICHTNER
    Germany
    CASTALIA
    USA
    KEMA INC.
    USA (Netherlands)
    LAHMEYER INTERNATIONAL GMBH
    Germany
    KPMG CORPORATE FINANCE

HATCH LTD

    Bahamas

Canada


Firms submitted proposals during May-09 and following an intensive review the Government is pleased to announce that a contract for BH-T1012 has been awarded to FICHTNER (Germany). The total contract amount is 515,160 Euros and work is expected to commence in early Sep-09. FICHTNER is an internationally renowned energy consulting firm with extensive knowledge and experience.

 

While both TCs are critical to energy security and efficiency in The Bahamas, BH-T1012 is of particular importance as the Government seeks to stabilize BEC and improve its operational and financial performance. As part of its ongoing efforts to improve the overall performance and accountability of the utility sectors, the Government also recently formed the Utilities Regulator and Competition Authority with the view to ensure these goals are achieved in a transparent manner.

 

This TC (BH T1012) will include a technical, financial, managerial, and operational review of BEC including the establishment of key performance indicators and benchmarking of BEC to similar utilities internationally. These indicators will be analyzed and recommendations made for improvements where warranted.

 

A strategic expansion and financing plan is to be prepared emphasizing the inclusion of renewable and alternative energy technologies, and strengthening of BEC’s ability to service its debt. The regulatory framework will be reviewed with a view to open the sector to independent power producers thus allowing power purchase agreements and liberalization of the sector. This will encourage diversification of the energy production matrix with the introduction of renewable and alternative energy generation which ultimately, where viable, will reduce The Bahamas’ dependence on fossil fuels, reduce emissions, and improve our energy security.

 

These initiatives have been discussed for some time and The Government is extremely pleased with the assistance given by the IDB in making these efforts a reality. The projects are expected to take 10-12 months to complete with interim reports generated to allow immediate action where required.

 

Source: The Bahamas Weekly.com



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