Local businesses scout for opportunities at US renewable energy show
Jamaican private-sector renewable energy companies were optimistic about exploring new technologies in the field at this year’s staging of RE+, formerly known as Solar Power International.
Director of Alternative Energy Plus, Morris Hutchinson, shared that his company has been represented at renewable energy shows in the past, one of which resulted in the introduction to Jamaica of an hybrid technology inverter, Sol-Ark.
Hutchinson was part of a Jamaican delegation attending the largest renewable energy event in North America, held from September 19 to 22.
The event aimed to provide an opportunity for key decision-makers in the green energy sector to learn about the latest US technologies and innovations in renewable energy management, storage solutions, and regulatory changes needed to encourage the transition from fossil fuels to clean energy.
“We want to keep ourselves on the cutting edge of technology. We are interested in knowing what is the latest technology that is available, and whether it can be implemented or used in Jamaica,” Hutchinson said.
Established in 2008, Alternative Energy is primarily concentrated on the residential market, where it offers solar, wind and hydro energy solutions.
“We have been doing quite a bit in terms of hybrid inverters and hybrid technology. We use it a lot in homes, and it gives us remote capabilities that are able to programme and assess the system installation remotely,” he explained, adding that problems can be diagnosed and solved remotely.
CEO of Construction Energy Herman Edie told The Gleaner that two years into the operations of his 24-year-old construction business, he saw the need to launch into solar energy solutions.
Solar water heaters, solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and solar lighting are among the product offerings of the Manchester-based company.
“Our latest technology are security cameras operated by solar and it can work as a light bulb as well; we have emergency bulbs that provide light for up to five hours. I am looking for new ideas from the trade show and more advanced technology that I can offer to my customers to make their lives more comfortable,” he said.
For Trevor Bernard, CEO of Premier Energy Solution Limited, based in St Ann, RE+ was an excellent opportunity to learn from, and build partnerships with, leading companies around the world.
“We are a new company and we are looking for opportunities. Maybe an opportunity to convert some of the vehicles we have in Jamaica to electric vehicles - that is a possibility,” he told The Gleaner.
Bernard shared that he is keen on exploring all things electric and solar, and is also interested in expanding his knowledge on waste-to-energy systems, as his other business deals with waste haulage.
Referring to California’s recent announcement that the state will ban sales of gasolene-powered new cars after 2035, Bernard said Jamaica has to embrace the change that is taking place around the world.
“It’s coming, and there’s nothing to stop it,” he remarked.