THE EDITOR, Sir:
I wish to congratulate Claude Clarke on his recent article headlined 'Could Paulwell's plan light the path to recovery?'
This is the best article written to date in connection with our cost of energy problem. I doubt if electricity rates can be reduced to 15 US cents per kilowatt-hour in the near future but do know that the current design engines working on heavy fuel oil (HFO), if installed, would be 35 per cent cheaper to generate electricity than what is currently being generated at Hunts Bay or Old Harbour Bay stations. Even if LNG is not immediately available it would be a start to the reduction of rates.
The modern day engines are dual fuel and can be shipped within 12 months. They can operate on HFO and be switched to LNG (without extra cost) whenever it comes.
The modern dual fuel engines operating on HFO carry a heat rate of under 8,000. The JPS plants at Hunts Bay and Old Harbour Bay go as high as 12,200. If energy fuel were liberalised two years ago we would now have been able to sell it at a lower cost to the consumer.
I believe that the statement made in Parliament recently by Phillip Paulwell is welcome news for the energy sector and he should be congratulated. Now that the announcement has been made, how do we proceed?
I do not believe that breaking the monopoly on transmission and distribution should be a priority but more effort should be put towards reducing the base load cost as quickly as possible.