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  • The Jamaica Public Service (JPS) Company is on target to complete the installation of 105,000 smart light-emitting diode (LED) street lights across the island by the end of 2021.
  • Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at the company, Vernon Douglas, said that 67,000 lights have already been installed.
  • He was addressing the Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) Public Consultation on the JPS’s 2019-2024 tariff review at the Sharon Baptist Church in Santa Cruz, St. Elizabeth, on Tuesday (March 10).

The Jamaica Public Service (JPS) Company is on target to complete the installation of 105,000 smart light-emitting diode (LED) street lights across the island by the end of 2021.

Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at the company, Vernon Douglas, said that 67,000 lights have already been installed.

He was addressing the Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) Public Consultation on the JPS’s 2019-2024 tariff review at the Sharon Baptist Church in Santa Cruz, St. Elizabeth, on Tuesday (March 10).

Mr. Douglas noted that about 1,000 new street lights have been mounted, to date, in the parish.

“St. Elizabeth has about 5,000 street lights, so by the end of next year, the whole parish will be covered with the bright (LED) lights,” he said.

The programme, which involves the replacement of High Pressure Sodium (HPS) lamps with LED bulbs, is expected to result in significant improvements in public lighting across the island.

The LED lights are more energy efficient, have a longer service life and added intelligent capabilities.

Mr. Douglas said the programme will improve the safety and security of Jamaicans and facilitate business.

“We see it not just as street lighting. We see where businesses, small shopkeepers, feel safer to open an extra hour, and that is why it is important to us,” he noted.

He said that the smart technology will enable the company to remotely detect when the streetlights are not working.

In addition, he noted that in the event that there is a problem at a plant, the lights can be dimmed, while the situation is being rectified.

“So, there does not have to be a [power] outage. If we are short, we could just dim the lights across the whole country for a little bit until you fix the plant [then] you just bring them back up to full illumination,” he explained.

Other projects being planned by the JPS for St. Elizabeth include power line upgrades, smart meter roll-out, lightning mitigation, pole replacement and voltage improvement.

Overall, the light and power company is investing some $68 billion over the next four years to facilitate improvement programmes islandwide. These include generation plant upgrades, integrated vegetation management, grid modernisation and transmission system upgrade.

The consultation in Santa Cruz was held to garner feedback from citizens regarding the JPS’s application for a rate increase of 4.69 per cent.

Queries were fielded by Mr. Douglas and the company’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Emanuel DaRosa.

Similar consultations will be held across the island in the coming weeks.

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