NASSAU, BAHAMAS- Works Minister Desmond Bannister yesterday revealed $30 million dollars will be invested in advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) on New Providence by 2022.
Bannister outlined initiatives in the pipeline for BPL and the energy sector while addressing Parliament.
He noted the AMI project will bring about the replacement of manual/physical meters with smart meter technology that allows for “real-time” metering capabilities and immediate disconnection/reconnection.
It would also allow for faster and more efficient identification/rectification of system issues and allow BPL to quickly and more efficiently disconnect delinquent customers, which will improve collections.
Improved collections will mean that BPL’s paying customers won’t be charged as much to subsidize delinquent customers.
Also in the pipeline is the phase II expansion of generation on New Providence to the tune of $70 million come 2021. The Phase II expansion of the Wartsila generation facility will bring an additional 90MW of capacity on-line for a total of 222MW.
This is expected to bring about reduced electricity rates to consumers through lower fuel charges given increased efficiency and cheaper, cleaner fuels, including the ability to accept LNG . The added capacity should eliminate the need for rolling load shedding / brown outs.
Bannister also noted that $28 million will be invested in solar installations in the family islands and that $48.1 million dollars will be invested in 132 kV transmission and substation upgrades in New Providence.
Bannister also noted that line upgrades and extensions on New Providence to the tune of $34.9 million dollars is expected in 2022.
This includes removing old and installing new facilities, installing and/or reinforcing fiber optic cable in overhead static line, and installing spare ducts in the right of way of new road construction to be used for future underground.