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‘With or without funding we’re doing renewables!’ – Mr Leroy A. E. Abraham – said over 10 companies expressed interest in partnering with BVIEC; Legislative changes to allow for both distributed and centralized renewable energy development to be rushed to HoA

ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – General Manager of the BVI Electricity Corporation (BVIEC) Mr. Leroy A. E. Abraham said that with or without donor funding, the Territory will be integrating renewable energy with the traditional energy sources.

The BVIEC has announced that a request for proposal has been issued for the installation of approximately 2MW of solar panels at various government and state/statutory bodies and owned entities.


Last night, September 23, 2014 leading partners of the Caribbean Electric Utility Service Corporation (CARILEC)/World Bank held the official opening ceremony of CARILEC/World Bank regulatory Forum in Collaboration with UKFCO and the BVIEC at Maria’s By The Sea which was attended by members and sponsors from several countries from across the Caribbean.


In his welcoming address Mr. Abraham said that while it is a known fact that the advancement of the topic of renewable energy has occurred in the industrialized nations of the world in large part due to subsidies and grants from various governmental and non-governmental organisations.



“I can assure everyone within the sound of my voice that the BVIEC will integrate renewable energy with traditional electricity sources to the benefit of the people of the British Virgin Islands in the absence of such grants and subsidies,” he said.


He however made it known that, “[if] we can get them we wouldn’t refuse them.” This is something he said has to be done in the best interest of the people of the VI. He noted that his entity in collaboration with the Attorney General’s Office of the VI Government is in the final stages of reviewing the necessary legislative changes for the allowance of both distributed and centralized renewable energy development into the blended mix of energy production by BVIEC.


“I am very confident that when the Honourable Mark H. Vanterpool Minister for Communications and Works receives it, it will be expeditiously taken to the House of Assembly. He has assured my Chairman of that,” said Abraham.

He said that when the legislation is passed in the Territory customers who wish to take advantage of the opportunities that the implementation of renewables can bring and particularly those who wish to have a grid tie arrangement will do so with the understanding that they too will have to assume like the BVIEC all of the responsibilities that come with being a producer of electricity within the VI.


“Strict technical requirements will have to be met, especially those which will ensure the safety of BVIEC’s personnel who are tasked with performing works on the grid network which will now be shared by both BVIEC and those customers having a feed-in arrangement,” he said.


He said that among the challenges that are to be expected is that of setting rates that are fair and efficient to the power company and every category of its customers. “At the end of the day, it must be assured that the feed-in system remains financially neutral to BVIEC as well as the customer, recognizing fixed cost recovery and potential cost shifting among various customer categories,” said Mr Abraham.


As it relates to the request for proposals Mr Abraham said that so far over ten companies from all parts of the world have responded expressing interest in the project.


“Therefore I can state with confidence that BVIEC is strategically poised to assist in developing this new Caribbean energy landscape as we have already gone through our flirtations and courting periods with the topic of renewable energy, we will in the not too distant future be issuing our marriage license by the Minister for Communications and Works in order to tie the knot as the saying goes,” said Abraham.


The BVIEC has recently finalized studies to determine the maximum penetration that can be permitted on its grid for both solar and wind combined which is approximately 15% of its average peak demand or equivalent to 5MW.





Category/ies:British Virgin Islands, News.
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