Fri | Jan 18, 2019

Make petroleum codes mandatory, says­ BSJ exec

Published:Friday | December 1, 2017 | 12:20 AMChristopher Serju
James Rawle, chairman of the standards council at the Bureau of Standards Jamaica

Describing the development of the National Petroleum Codes as a “very significant event”, James Rawle, chairman of the standards council at the Bureau of Standards Jamaica (BSJ), has charged the Government and industry players to continue to work together to ensure that these are implemented as a matter of course throughout the country.

“The standards are codes of written documents. I think in this country, we have a tendency to say that we have done something, but we have forgotten conveniently about execution, the implementation phase. So before I go further, I’d like to say that the importance of this work will only be realised when we implement and see the benefits of that we’re trying to do,” Rawle told Thursday’s launch of the National Petroleum Codes at the BSJ’s multi-purpose facility on Winchester Road, St Andrew.

“Development of the national petroleum code is a very significant event, given the critical nature and importance of the sector to the Jamaican people and the Jamaican economy as a whole. This is important because it marks the beginning of a new approach to how we do things.”

He added: “The BSJ further recommends to the Ministry of Science, Energy and Technology to take further regulatory action to make the codes mandatory. As it stands today, the codes are there. If we are going to have the full effect in a critical area such as this one, we believe that they should be mandatory.”


The codes consist of five standards as follows:

- JS341 ­ which contains specification for liquid petroleum products such as unleaded motor gasolene, unleaded E-10 motor gasolene, and jet A1 fuel.

- JS342 ­ speaks to specifications for liquefied petroleum gas and liquefied natural gas.

- JS343 ­ contains classification and characteristics of the different types of lubricants and also addresses the issue of commingling.

- JS344 ­ outlines the product chain of custody procedures for managing petroleum products to ensure control of the product from the point of production to the point of sale.

-JS345 ­ speaks to the general requirements and variations of bio-fuels such as ethanol and bio-diesel.

Stephen Wedderburn, executive director of the BSJ, spoke to the importance of full implementation of the codes as a matter of urgency.

“We want to encourage the use of these codes as we seek to foster a culture of quality within the petroleum sector, with a view to encouraging competitiveness, transparency, and safeguarding our national interest,” said Wedderburn.

Even though the matter has been under discussion since 2008, it wasn’t until June this year that the Ministry of Science, Energy and Technology was able to secure funding from the World Bank to hire a consultant to develop the National Petroleum Codes.