Government of Saint Luca

Go to Homepage


[Contact Us]

Search this Site


Alternative Energy Debate Still On

Governor General
Prime Minister
The Cabinet
The Senate
House of Assembly
St. Lucia Ambassadors
The Constitution
The Staff Orders

National Television Network

Press Releases
Saint Lucia 25th Independence Celebrations
About Saint Lucia
Frequently Asked Questions
Web Links
Government Directory
Browse by Agency
Site Help

Contact: John Emmanuel

Tuesday, May 20, 2003 - As the debate continues over the need to explore alternative sources of power generation on the island, the issue of environmental protection has been underscored again as one of the main factors for a change from fossil to diesel fuels.

The latest admonition has come from Dr. Bill Ritchie – Managing Director of the United Kingdom based PB Power. Dr. Ritchie, who was on island as part of the St. Lucia Electricity Services Limited (LUCELEC) 2003 ‘Energy in Motion Series’ that ended on Sunday, May 18th, 2003. Dr. Ritchie told his audience who consisted of a wide cross-section of stakeholders involved in energy generation, that with terrorist activity increasing worldwide, huge oil laden tankers passing through the Caribbean waters provided an easy target. Any such attack or an incident in which a tanker runs aground and spills its oil could cripple the tourism industry which has become a mainstay for many Caribbean islands.

Such a scenario, Dr. Ritchie stated, coupled with the need to be more cost effective, was a powerful incentive for change. “If there is a disaster and I know we all get more focused on disasters these days with terrorism much more to the front of everybody’s mind, this could spell disaster. If this part of the world has a disaster and there is heavy fuel floating about on the beaches of the Caribbean, then that would have a greater impact on the demand forecast than almost anything else because your economies are dependent on tourists and some oil floating on the beaches could have a crippling effect on your livelihoods.”

The renowned expert with over two decades of experience in the field of power generation echoed sentiments expressed here in the past that St. Lucia’s most likely alternative for electricity generation was wind power. Meanwhile Public Utilities Minister Honourable Felix Finisterre has called for more constructive dialogue in the debate over electricity generation needs versus environmental protection.

Finisterre said, “The ensuring debate therefore has not been helped at all by the seeming antagonisms as if it were two sides of a continuum. On one side we have the energy conservationists saying that they believe that X or Y can be done, by 15 and 20%, some of those figures being quite gratuitous whereby we can replace fossil fuels by year X,Y or Z. I believe that the time has now come for us to buckle down, do the relevant research and analyse the figures along with LUCELEC so that we can move forward.”

LUCELEC officials say the company has begun looking seriously at the prospect of wind power generation with two sites being examined for possible wind farms.

[Home] [Up] [Search 2003 Press Releases] [Site Help]

© 2003 Government Information Service. All rights reserved.

Read our privacy guidelines.