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Solar energy association wants info on 115MW project

Published:Monday | May 12, 2014 | 9:07 AM

The Jamaica Solar Energy Association is raising concern that there has been no word lately from the Office of Utilities Regulations (OUR) about the procurement for the supply of 115 megawatts of power from renewable energy sources.

The association says it is calling for probity, transparency and urgency in relation to the renewable energy project in light of the problems currently facing the 381 megawatt project.

The OUR has already named three bidders for the supply of 78 megawatts of that power but the association says the regulator has been silent on the next steps since March.

The association is calling for the OUR to ensure due diligence is observed in relation to the 115 megawatt procurement in light of the problems now plaguing the 381 megawatt project.

The Government last week announced that it is looking to revoke the licence issued to Energy World International after it failed to post its performance bond in relation to the project.

EWI has pointed to the refusal by the Inter-American Development Bank to provide funding for the project as one of the reasons it failed to meet the bond deadline.

The IDB is reportedly withholding its support because of alleged procurement breaches in the inclusion of EWI in the bidding process which were highlighted by the Office of the Contractor General.

Now the solar energy association is demanding that the OUR exercise due diligence to determine the technical competence and financial ability of the three bidders for the 115 megawatts project to begin construction in August 2014 for commissioning by July 2016.

The association is demanding that the OUR make public the licences issued for the supply of the renewable energy generation capacity in the same way that the licence to EWI was published.

Meanwhile, the association says the OUR had committed to issuing a new request for proposals for the remaining 37 megawatts of energy for the project in early 2014, but is yet to do so.

It says it is anxiously awaiting the start of the bidding process for those 37 megawatts.


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