SKELEC Presents Plan for Energy Reduction to CIC

A luncheon held between the Chamber of Industry and Commerce and the St Kitts Electricity Company tackled topics surrounding the supply of electricity generation, costs and plans for the future for St Kitts.

In the wake of recent heated debates and public discussion about the high cost of electricity, officials from the management team of the St Kitts Electricity Company (SKELEC) and the Chamber of Industry and Commerce (CIC) met to address issues surrounding the hot topic.

Calvin Cable, Executive Director for the Chamber said, while most persons present at the luncheon praised SKELEC on the improved electricity service, especially the reduction of outages, concern was being raised by consumers about the high cost of electricity.

He said the question everyone seems to be asking is, “When will the cost reduce?” According to him, it will take at least three years to have everything effectively in place due to a number of strategies to be employed for reliable service.

“One, negotiations have to be completed. Two, the construction and commissioning of the Wind Turbine Systems would have to be done and that would take nine months to a year. Then the reliability would have to be tested for another year and half to see what happens when the wind dies [down] and how reliable and constant the systems are.”

Cable said the Chamber intends to involve the government and other stakeholders to reducing the high costs.

“We know the government itself is concerned. This has been expressed by the Prime Minister, among others. And what we would really hope for is a forum where all the stakeholders can come together and discuss the way forward. We figure there are many ideas out there some of these we need to address. There may be a few more alternatives to bring relief. So we’re hoping that with constant communication on this issue, we can work towards a common good for the nation.”

He said coming out of the presentations, alternative energy, particularly wind energy, seems to be the more practical solution.

Cable said, SKELEC’s Chief Technical Officer, John Krupski said the cost of fuel seems to be on its way up and since there is a fuel surcharge which follows the changing price in fuel costs, it is likely that the cost of electricity is on its way up as well.

In the meanwhile, on Saturday, SKELEC will begin a Tree Cutting Program, to clear the overhead lines of hanging trees.

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