Consumer group calls for dialogue on power supply issues

There are no winners coming out of the decision made by the Fair Trading Commission (FTC) regarding the Barbados Light & Power’s request to recover costs and investment on battery storage, says the Barbados Consumer Empowerment Network (BCEN).

In handing down the decision last week, the FTC granted 15 megawatts of the 90 requested by the power company via a Clean Energy Transition Rider, stating there was still too much uncertainty.

“BCEN firmly asserts that there are no winners in this decision, especially considering that only partial approval was granted to the Barbados Light & Power Company’s (BLPC) investment in battery storage; and that consumers were place in a position of uncertainty about the increases in their electricity bills and whether they will receive a reliable electricity service,” said a media release.

“Limited approval raises apprehensions about grid reliability and stability, particularly during peak demand periods or intermittent renewable energy generation. These circumstances are unfavourable for both the BLPC and consumers.”

The consumer rights organisation said an environment of “sagacious open and transparent dialogue” “could have produced innovative solutions that harmonised the imperatives of having an affordable, sustainable, and reliable energy supply beneficial to both the BLPC and consumers”.

Light & Power expressed disappointment with the decision, stating this had implications for the stability of the power grid, which was also an area of concern for BCEN, but they believe it can still be salvaged.

“On reflection, the FTC’s decision offers valuable lessons for regulators, utility companies, stakeholders, and consumers; in the sense that it shows that there is need for regulatory oversight, stakeholder collaboration and transparent reporting if Barbados is going to achieve its renewable energy transition goals, while safeguarding consumers interests with respect to affordability, reliability, and sustainability in the supply of electricity.”

The Government of Barbados has set an ambitious target of 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030. (PR/SAT)

The post Consumer group calls for dialogue on power supply issues appeared first on

Leave a Reply