Ag. Deputy Chief Information Officer
Department of Information & Public Relations
The Government of the Virgin Islands is making progress in enhancing the electricity network in the Territory and catering to the growing demand for electrical supply.
Minister for Communications and Works, Honourable Mark Vanterpool, stated that the Territory has gotten very close within the last two to three years to the maximum electrical demand.
Honourable Vanterpool said, “Phase V is to increase the capacity to meet the growing demand and hopefully after this we will not have as much power outages as we have been experiencing. I want to thank the residents for their patience. I know we have been suffering from some recent load shedding because of a few engines being down but measures have been put in place to have the issues resolved. ”
Works are continuing to improve this aspect of the Territory’s infrastructure at Pockwood Pond through the Phase V Development Programme for which the power station will be expanded to house two extra generators. In addition, a new transmission cable will be installed from Road Town to Pockwood Pond.
Recent Electricity Outages
The British Virgin Islands Electricity Corporation (BVIEC) has provided a solution plan and has temporarily resolved the recent outages in the Territory.
The corporation in a statement said, due to the loss of 5.5 Megawatts (unit #7) on July 17, the BVIEC’s effective generating capacity was reduced to 36.7 Megawatts, and then to 35.2 Megawatts with the loss of 1.5 Megawatts (unit #9) on September 24.
The corporation said in conjunction with other minor occurring issues, the capacity was close to 33 Megawatts, whereas the Corporation faces an average daily peak demand of 32 Megawatts.
The Corporation further stated that it is operating with effectively zero margin for error and such was the recent case when unit #4 shut down on a number of occasions resulting in load shedding across many areas of the Territory.
On Thursday, October 15, the issue which caused unit #4 to occasionally shut down was resolved and an additional generating unit was placed on the grid, increasing the effective capacity of the on-site Aggreko package plant from 3.3 to 4.4 Megawatts.
The #9 Generator will be available early next week, as a temporary transformer has been identified to replace the original which failed on September 24. Unit #7 is expected to be back on line by December 31.
The British Virgin Islands Electricity Corporation in collaboration with the Ministry of Communications and Works thanks the community for their continued support and patience and asks the public to conserve energy whenever possible.
NOTES TO EDITOR(S):
- Background on Phase V:
- The Phase V Power Development Plan will be installed over the next 18 months. The Phase V development involves the purchase and installation of two diesel-fired generators, adding production capacity of over 16 megawatts of electrical power, plus two 34.5 KV cables, which will follow a separate route to that of the existing Pockwood Pond to Road Town line. Wartisilla has been contracted to handle the installation of the generators while K-Line has be contracted to handle the installation of the two 34.5 KV transmission cables.