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A special energy conservation coordinator is to be appointed in the Office of the Cabinet to oversee the implementation of measures aimed at reducing energy consumption in Government ministries, agencies, and departments.
This is one of several initiatives, aimed at addressing the country’s rising energy costs, which came out of the recent Cabinet retreat.
Prime Minister, Bruce Golding, speaking to journalists at Jamaica House on Wednesday (Jan. 23), said that ministries, agencies, and departments will also be required to appoint an individual, who will “have the responsibility to identify areas in which we can conserve (energy).”
“The cost of importing oil into the country increased last year by US$540 million, (which is) over and above what it costs us the previous year. We know the impact that this has right throughout the economy,” he noted.
He stated that the Government would lead the energy conservation effort “because Government is a huge consumer of electricity, (with) the (National) Water Commission being, perhaps, the largest. The Commission, I gather, has an electricity bill of US$4 million per month because they have so many pumps. We have instructed them to look and see what can be done (to reduce the electricity costs). Maybe they are using inefficient pumps, maybe they need to look at their systems to see what can be done,” the Prime Minister advised.
He pointed out that there were measures that could be taken to reduce the country’s overall consumption of electricity without “reducing our enjoyment of life.”
“A lot of the electricity that we burn is wasted, simply because of our lifestyle and because we are not sufficiently sensitized to the need for conservation. We (Government) can avoid (the) wastage that is taking place and we (are going to) track, on a monthly basis, the consumption of energy in each department. We are going to have to reduce, as much as is possible, that unnecessary burden on the taxpayers,” Mr. Golding underscored.