UWI to build own LNG power plant

Dr Paul Aiken, head of the Electronics Unit in the Department of Physics at the University of West Indies, Mona.

(Jamaica Gleaner) The University of West Indies, Mona (UWI) will set up and operate a 7 megawatt liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility, which is projected to shave off up to $350 million annually from the campus’ energy costs.

Those savings equate to around half of the campus’ energy bill, said head of the electroncs unit, Dr Paul Aiken.

“Energy costs are the second-highest costs to the UWI, followed by salaries, and we can’t do anything about salaries but we can add LNG,” said Aiken at a Gleaner Editors’ Forum on Tuesday, while making the wider point that the campus wants to reduce its expenses in order to better offset the rising cost of student tuition.

The project will allow UWI Mona to become independent of power provider Jamaica Public Service Company.

Dr Paul Aiken, head of the Electronics Unit in the Department of Physics at the University of West Indies, Mona.

UWI, Mona selected American company New Fortress Energy as LNG supplier for its plant from a field of two other regional contenders.

“The capital to do the project will be somewhere in the single digit millions, in the region of US$7 million, but we are trying to get it down to US$6 million,” said Aiken following the forum. Those prices translate to around $800 million to $900 million in local currency.

The university expects to sign an agreement with New Fortress around October, after which it will purchase and install five General Electric engines to drive its power plant.

The plant will run on LNG, with liquid petroleum gas or LPG as back-up, and is due for commissioning by July 2018.

Under the partnership with New Fortress, the energy company will provide grants and scholarships and assist in training more than 100 electrical power engineering students, according to UWI. The number of those students is expected to increase to over 300 in the next two years, with the Government of Jamaica and the University’s goal to dramatically increase the total number of graduating engineers to over 1,000 per year. GE will also provide training to students, UWI said.

“The added advantage is that we formed an engineering company, Mona Tech Engineers, which will be the operator of the plant; so it will be a full university system and training,” said Aiken.

“We will be developing the next generation of electrical power engineers to support all the infrastructure, so this includes the Red Stripe’s and the JPS’s … so they do not have to bring down expatriates,” he said.

New Fortress is also developing LNG infrastructure for Red Stripe Jamaica to power its Kingston brewery and has developed gas-supply infrastructure in Montego Bay through which it supplies JPS’ Bogue power plant, after its conversion to a combined cycle operation by GE.

The UWI Mona project is to be developed in phases, starting with a cogeneration unit using thermal energy to cool the buildings, from which it expects $52 million of savings. The second phase will involve the LNG plant and expected savings of $300 million per year.

Under the terms of the fuel supply agreement as stipulated by UWI documents, New Fortress will upgrade and expand the existing cooling infrastructure.

The engines are expected to last for 30 years.

Comments  

Hurricane Maria leaves 13 dead in Puerto Rico, churns toward Turks and Caicos

  Residents working on their roof in badly damaged neighborhood are seen from a Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey surveying the aftermath from Hurricane Maria in St.

Mexico focuses search for quake survivors on 10 buildings; 273 dead

MEXICO CITY,  (Reuters) – Rescuers swarmed over rubble with shovels and picks yesterday in a frantic search for survivors two days after Mexico’s deadliest earthquake in a generation, focusing on 10 collapsed buildings where people may still be alive.

Mexico quake toll tops 230

MEXICO CITY,  (Reuters) – Mexican rescuers yesterday laboured for a second night amid the rubble to save possible survivors of the country’s most lethal earthquake in a generation, including a girl trapped under a school in Mexico City, as the death toll exceeded 230.

Indigenous protesters seize oil wells in Peruvian Amazon -chief

LIMA,  (Reuters) – Villagers in the Peruvian Amazon have shut down at least 50 oil wells operated by Frontera Energy Corp to protest talks over a new contract even as past pollution lingers, the leader of an indigenous federation said yesterday.

Granny was suffocated, churchyard death for ‘killer’

(Trinidad Express) Grandmother Haniffa Bedassie operated a mini mart in her Chaguanas community for over two decades without ever being robbed, until yesterday.

Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly.

We built stabroeknews.com using new technology. This makes our website faster, more feature rich and easier to use for 95% of our readers.
Unfortunately, your browser does not support some of these technologies. Click the button below and choose a modern browser to receive our intended user experience.

Update my browser now

×