Jamaica Showcases World's Largest Wind-Solar Hybrid Installation
Earlier this week, we looked at why the Caribbean could be the next leader in renewable energy. With the reveal of the WindStream Technologies in Kingston, Jamaica, it looks as those that may be truer than ever.
The hybrid farm was commissioned on the roof of law firm Meyers, Fletcher, and Gordon and is expected to generate 106,000kWh of energy and produce a return on investment in less than 4 years.
"We have been at the forefront of the Jamaican legal landscape for 70 years and we are pleased to be continuing that trend by leading in Jamaican sustainability and renewable energy," Meyers, Fletcher, and Gordon’s CEO Donovan Cunningham said. "This was a bold undertaking and we expect to reap rich rewards through our partnership with WindStream."
It’s expected to save the firm more than $2 million in energy costs during its 25 year lifetime.
The installation consists of 50 SolarMills, which generate 25 kW of wind power and 55 kW of solar. Its coastal position also allows for high winds, sometimes up to 60 mph. The mills are equipped to withstand extreme conditions and energy surges.
The SolarMills use vertical access wind turbines, solar panels, and smart electronics to work on or off the grid. They’re also extremely compact, allowing for a greater deployment in a smaller area.
WindStream, a U.S.-based company, is excited to be working with Jamaica Public Service on the Project.
"We are proud to be working with JPS, which is distributing our products within Jamaica and throughout the Caribbean," WindStream COO Travis Campbell said. "This SolarMill installation is an excellent model for other businesses to follow. If you are interested in energy efficiency and saving money, SolarMills are a simple, cost-effective solution."
Be sure to check out a video detailing and showing the project in action above.
All but two UK regions failing on school energy efficiency
Most schools are still "treading water" on implementing energy efficient technology, according to new analysis of Government data from eLight.
Yorkshire & the Humber and the North East are the only regions where schools have collectively reduced how much they spend on energy per pupil, cutting expenditure by 4.4% and 0.9% respectively. Every other region of England increased its average energy expenditure per pupil, with schools in Inner London doing so by as much as 23.5%.
According to The Carbon Trust, energy bills in UK schools amount to £543 million per year, with 50% of a school’s total electricity cost being lighting. If every school in the UK implemented any type of energy efficient technology, over £100 million could be saved each year.
Harvey Sinclair, CEO of eEnergy, eLight’s parent company, said the figures demonstrate an uncomfortable truth for the education sector – namely that most schools are still treading water on the implementation of energy efficient technology. Energy efficiency could make a huge difference to meeting net zero ambitions, but most schools are still lagging behind.
“The solutions exist, but they are not being deployed fast enough," he said. "For example, we’ve made great progress in upgrading schools to energy-efficient LED lighting, but with 80% of schools yet to make the switch, there’s an enormous opportunity to make a collective reduction in carbon footprint and save a lot of money on energy bills. Our model means the entire project is financed, doesn’t require any upfront expenditure, and repayments are more than covered by the energy savings made."
He said while it has worked with over 300 schools, most are still far too slow to commit. "We are urging them to act with greater urgency because climate change won’t wait, and the need for action gets more pressing every year. The education sector has an important part to play in that and pupils around the country expect their schools to do so – there is still a huge job to be done."
North Yorkshire County Council is benefiting from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, which has so far awarded nearly £1bn for energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation projects around the country, and Craven schools has reportedly made a successful £2m bid (click here).
The Department for Education has issued 13 tips for reducing energy and water use in schools.