Since the recent acquisition of the majority share holdings of the Grand Bahama Power Company by Canadian based company Emera, the question on the minds of the residents of Grand Bahama has been what changes will the company bring to improve the quality of service on the island. And, with the summer months fast approaching, the operating challenges that impacted the company last year May are a not so distant memory for customers. Even with Emera’s much touted announcement in December of plans for the construction of a new generating plant, residents are inquiring about what will be done in the interim to address the issue of reliability.
To that aim, we, the Grand Bahama Power Company, are pleased to announce that our company, through Emera, has entered into a contract with Aggreko, a global leader in generator rental, for the leasing of an additional 35 MW of supplemental generation for our customers.
The additional 42 units are expected to be on island in early April and fully operational by mid-April. When combined with the 10MW of temporary generation we acquired from Aggreko in June of last year, it will result in a total of 45 MW of supplemental generation for the island. What this translates into for our customers is improved reliability.
Executive Chairman of the Grand Bahama Power Company, Ray Robinson, also remarked on Emera’s commitment to making short- term and long-term improvements to increase the overall level of reliability experienced by the customers of Grand Bahama Power. “We realize that the level of reliability that the residents of this island have been experiencing is nowhere near the standard that it should be. We also recognize that waiting for a new diesel plant to be operational by mid-2012, in order to see significantly improved levels of reliability and stability is not a viable option for the customers of Grand Bahama Power. For those reasons, I am very pleased to put in place an interim solution that will not only provide an immediate solution for a drastic reduction in customer interruptions, but will provide economic and employment opportunities for Bahamians in operating and maintaining the additional units. Emera and Grand Bahama Power remain committed to ensuring that outages are reduced for all customers of the Grand Bahama Power Company.”
Alan Kelley, President and CEO of the Grand Bahama Power Company, revealed that the preemptive measures taken were necessary to ensure that the company would be in a better position to meet the load of the island, especially during the summer months. “The supplemental generation not only represents improved reliability, but has some other beneficial implications for our customers. Due to the overall efficiency and better heat rate performance of the units as compared to the combustion turbines, our customers can expect to see a stabilization of fuel surcharge rates that tend to be more volatile with the usage of less efficient units. The rental units will eliminate the need to run the combustion turbines.”
It is our goal to restore Grand Bahama Power to a utility that the residents of this island can be proud of and that really lives up to the slogan, Keeping Grand Bahama’s Future Bright.