Minister Calls for Change in Use of Energy



Photo by: Mark BellMinister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Phillip Paulwell (second left), having a light exchange with (from left), Director, Energy Economics and Planning in the Energy Division of the Ministry; Yvonne Barrett-Edwards; Principal Director, Energy Division, Fitzroy Vidal and Energy Technical Consultant ,Eaton Haughton, at a recent energy workshop, held at the Knutsford Court Hotel, in Kingston.




Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining, Hon. Phillip Paulwell, is urging Jamaicans to change the way they consume energy, particularly electricity.


Delivering the keynote address at a recently held sensitization workshop for the introduction of a tool kit for media practitioners, at the Knutsford Court Hotel, in Kingston, the Minister informed that the country currently spends some US$2 billion to import approximately 19.3 million barrels of oil annually, which he said, is a significant sum.


The tool kit is a set a strategies to help journalists report more clearly on energy related issues.


The Minister  pointed out that the country is on a path of greater conservation and efficiency through the diversification of the ‘energy mix’; the introduction of new energy strategies, and encouraging  individual conservation efforts.


“We have to get a change in our entire behaviour, because we are a poor country. It has to change. It has to change at the Government [level] but also at the private sector and the individual levels,” he argued.


The Minister said that a great effort is being made to raise the bar for the increased integration of alternative energy strategies into the national energy mix, including the expansion of existing generation and the building of new wind farms.


“Since the start of 2012, I have issued about 300 licences for individuals and companies that are generating their own electricity using renewables and who are now able to sell the excess amount generated to the JPSCo. That is encouraging and even those who do not want to be tied to the grid are generating their own electricity,” he said.


Mr. Paulwell argued that the country is heading in the right direction to realize the objective of greater conservation, efficiency and diversification into renewables.