International

Wind Farm Saves Jamaica $54M on Oil Imports, Energy Minister Says

Jamaican Energy Minister Fayval Williams said Wigton Windfarm Limited has saved the country’s government over $54 million on oil imports.

The energy minister, speaking Friday at Wigton Windfarm’s Initial Public Offering (IPO) investor briefing at the Montego Bay Convention Centre in Rose Hall, St. James, said the production of clean energy from the facility has enabled the country to avoid the purchase of 800,000 barrels of oil, and the emission of one million tons of carbon dioxide, thereby reducing the country’s carbon footprint, the Jamaica Gleaner reported.

Wigton, located in Rose Hill, South Manchester, is the largest wind energy facility in the English-speaking Caribbean.

The company, which is a subsidiary of the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica (PCJ), began operating in 2004 with the commissioning of a 20.7 megawatt-generating plant, Wigton I.

This was followed by the development of Wigton II in 2010, which generates 18 megawatts of energy. Wigton III, the 24-megawatt expansion of the facility, was officially commissioned into service in June 2016 by Prime Minister Andrew Holness.

Williams commended the company for the progress made since its inception and lauded the IPO as a “bold strategy.”

“I can say that I am truly pleased with the strides that Wigton has made over these years,” she said. “The growth in [renewable energy] globally will undoubtedly bring greater investment opportunities in the future for a company like Wigton and we want Jamaica to be a part of this growing global movement in an even greater way. I believe we have the will and the capacity, and as a government, we are putting the plans in place to ensure that we maximize our renewable energy potential.”

Jamaicans will have the opportunity to purchase shares in Wigton from when the IPO opened on April 17 to its closure on May 1.

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