JIS News

Cabinet has appointed new leadership for the Generation Procurement Entity (GPE), with a mandate to undertake procurement of new electricity-generation capacity, in accordance with The Electricity Act, 2015.

This was disclosed by Minister of Science, Energy and Technology, Hon. Daryl Vaz, during his contribution to the 2021/2022 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives on May 18.

Mr. Vaz noted that the entire energy sector hangs on the work of the GPE and that the review of unsolicited proposals and requests for proposals (RFPs) to the market for new generation must be accorded urgent priority by the GPE.

“We have recruited a Chief Technical Expert to support the GPE and we expect onboarding by July 1, 2021. The GPE has been given the charge to get moving. We want to see a significant increase in our generation capacity and our renewable energy share, based on the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP),” he said.

He added that the IRP envisions 32 per cent of generation and net load in 2030 to be met with renewable mix and 49 per cent of generation by 2037.

The renewable mix resources include solar, wind, hydroelectric, waste to energy and biomass.

The IRP is the electricity roadmap for Jamaica under the period 2018-2037. It describes the preferred resource mix over two decades that meets reliability of service, reduced cost of operations, fuel source diversity, electric grid flexibility and the lowering of the environmental carbon footprint.

Mr. Vaz said to place the work of the GPE in context, the country anticipates US$2.8 billion in investments over the life of the plan, which will serve to modernise the electricity infrastructure, diversify the fuel source and institutionalise energy conservation and efficiency.

“There can be no delay in the work of the GPE to procure additional generation capacity to move the energy agenda forward into a new, bold and brighter future. The Inter-American Development Bank is providing assistance with procurement,” he pointed out.

He added that he is aware of the level of public interest about the delay in reviewing several unsolicited proposals that could not have been acted upon until the GPE was settled.

“The public can expect requests for proposals within six months,” Mr. Vaz said.

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