SVREL forecasts multimillion savings on solar investment
First phase of installation nears completion
IN AN effort to reduce its massive electricity bill, Supreme Ventures Racing and Entertainment Limited (SVREL) is now in the process of completing the instalment of its solar energy system at Caymanas Park, which is located Gregory Park, St Catherine.
According to Lorna Gooden, general manager of SVREL, the installation of the solar plant, which is being erected in three phases, is estimated to save the betting company over 100 million a year, once the construction is completed.
“Currently, we are paying over 100 million dollars per year for electricity and so we can understand the potential savings that this project will bring to Caymanas Park,” she shared. “This will certainly be massive for us.”
Gooden said that the first phase includes providing power supply through the administration building and operations at the main office. The other two phases will cover the stable areas.
“What that intends to do is to reduce the carbon footprints of the company, and you know that we are in the age of global warming and we have seen where our usage was increasing and will continue to increase,” Gooden said. “We as a company thought it fit to look at our operations and see how best we could aid towards the reduction in the carbon footprint that continues to impact global warming, and that was one of the projects that was implemented.
“We will see some benefit from this in the future, and not right now as you can imagine, the initial cost would have been recovered over the first five years. We have to pay for the capital outflow and then after five years we will see a reduction in our expenses to electricity,” Gooden explained.
“What will happen in the first five years is that the cost of electricity to JPS (Jamaica Public Service) will be replaced by the cost to pay for the capital outflow, then after five years we will reap the benefit of the overall reduction in our energy costs,” she noted.
Gooden pointed out that her company’s operations have been impacted on a number occasions because of power cuts in and around Caymanas Park and, therefore, this new solar system will ensure that there will be electricity at the track at all times.
“It is part of the plan to ensure that we maintain some self-efficiency because in recent times our JPS supply has been impacted by a number of outages,” she said.
“We are understanding that their transmitter in the area has been impacted by other activities, which are impacting on our operations, and we can’t afford, particularly, on a race day, to be out of supply,” Gooden stated.
She underscored that once the plant is fully complete, then there is the likelihood that the benefits of the solar plant could be extended to the communities in and around Caymanas Park.
“We are ruling nothing out,” she said. “But what we are trying to do now is to ensure that the Caymanas operations meet some self-proficiency, before we can say we are moving towards assisting the communities,” Gooden added.