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National power grid has capacity, says Symmonds

Article taken from the Nation News Paper – October 20, 2022  

BARBADOS IS EQUIPPED to handle the integration of renewable energy sources into the national power grid, says Minister of Energy and Business Kerrie Symmonds.

Speaking at the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (BCCI) Renewable Energy Expo at Hilton Barbados yesterday, he said he was “baffled” by prevailing claims that the country’s power grid would be oversaturated, which occurs when there is more electricity generated than the power grid can handle, or there would be a shortage of power available. “As of October 1 this year we have had 65.5 megawatts of renewable energy installed on our grid. There are, as of the first of October, 22.8 megawatts of capacity which is potential. I have licensed it but it has not yet been installed. It therefore means you have a total of 88.3 megawatts of renewable energy capacity either already installed or about to be installed on the grid in Barbados.

“That is 88.3 out of a likely 750 megawatts. We have only just begun the journey, so it baffles me as the Minister of Energy when I hear the disinformation and misinformation about oversaturation and shortage of availability and this may not work anymore. Not true, when we’re only at 88 and we need to get to 750,” he said.

The minister also sought to address the claim that Barbados’ feeder lines, which send power from the electricity generating stations or substations to distribution points, were also oversaturated.

He explained that capacity concerns on a feeder line usually arise when “the feeder line gets to roughly five megawatts or more of capacity”, as they were not designed to carry much more than the stipulated amount of power. Symmonds revealed that of the 54 feeder lines across the island, only seven had been “red flagged” as approaching peak levels, those being in the areas of Arch Hall, Green Hill, Newton, Sam Lord’s, Sunbury, Grazettes and White Hall.



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