My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: SJPC, the Marubeni, EWP and JPS Co consortium's to begin LNG Plant Construction in Q2 of 2013 - Jamaica's On A Mission towards The Impossible Promised Land

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

SJPC, the Marubeni, EWP and JPS Co consortium's to begin LNG Plant Construction in Q2 of 2013 - Jamaica's On A Mission towards The Impossible Promised Land

“The introduction of LNG expects to bring 30-40 per cent reduction in overall cost of electricity to Jamaica. Based on an analysis done by JPS, the new plant will help achieve a 30-per cent reduction in the system heat rates by 2015 when operating natural gas”

Quote from the SJPC (South Jamaica Power Company) EIA (Environmental Impact Reports) as reported in The Sunday Gleaner, Sunday December 2nd2012


Possibly the biggest construction project of paramount importance to Jamaica’s Energy Future began its initial stages in December 2012. It’s to be built by the consortium of Marubeni of Japan, EWP of South Korea, parents of the JPS Co (Jamaica Public Service Company) as stated in the article “LNG plant to carve US$200m off oil bill”, published Sunday December 2, 2012, The Jamaica Gleaner.Now's a great time to play the song “On a Mission”!!


This project, the SJPC (South Jamaica Power Company) LNG (Liquid Natural Gas) Power Plant is to be located on a 300-acre property in Old Harbour. The new company the SJPC, which was incorporated in early January 2012 had an ownership structure that trickles down as follows:

1.      40% by Marubeni Japan
2.      40% Korea East West Power
3.      20% owned by the JPS
4.      Jamaican Directors on the Management Board Valentine Fagan, Kim Chi Wan and Seiji Kawamura.

The specs for the LNG Plant, which is essentially a Gas Turbine Plant, first in Jamaica at this power rating, is as follows:

1.      US$614 million is the estimated cost of the project
2.      Two (2) years to build
3.      360 MW-combined cycle-power plant
4.      300-acre property in Old Harbour being prepared
5.      US$217 million (J$19.7b) projected reduction in Oil Imports form GOJ's BOP (Balance of Payments)
6.      30-40% reduction in Electricity Rates for all Jamaican
7.      1,200 jobs; 800 for Engineers and 400 for Trade Workers
8.      Replaces 41-year-old 223.5 MW Steam Turbines in Old Harbour and the 36-year-old 68.5 MW B6 unit at Hunts Bay

I personally thought this day would never come. With the amount of bickering and negative news surrounding the LNG Plant as reported in my blog article entitled JPS Co parents Marubeni and EWP mull decision to supply LNG - GOJ to eat Humble Pie to avoid an Ice Age Continental Drift” it looked like yet another wasted opportunity for Jamaica Energy Sector to Move forwards and appeared destined to sink into a quagmire of arguments.

The Government had made the decision to go LNG and bypass coal as stated in my blog article entitled Senator Phillip Paulwell chooses LNG over Coal - Power Engineers in Steven King's Graveyard Shift” possibly upsetting many hoping to make money from trucking contracts for carrying Coal form the Ports.

Thus when Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining Philip Paulwellannounced on Tuesday October 2nd 2012 in a hastily called Press Briefing to let Marubeni of Japan and EWP (East West Power) of South Korea, majority shareholders of JPS Co go it alone both in terms of construction of the LNG Plant AND the procurement of the LNG, with the GOJ being merely a regulator as per the article “LNG project lives”, published Wednesday October 3, 2012, McPherse Thompson, Assistant Editor - Business, The Jamaica Gleaner, I was also in shock myself.

So much so I penned my blog article entitled JPS Co to build 100 KW Solar Plant at UTECH - Marubeni of Japan and EWP (East West Power) Benevolence as LNG Project now Taken 2 the next Level for 2015AD” that mentioned this historic decision while praising Marubeni of Japan and EWP (East West Power) of South Korea on their benevolence to UTECH (University of Technology) as it relates to their project gift of a 100 KW Solar Installation.

The project’s slated to kick off in December 2012 with site acceptance and EIA (Environmental Impact Reports) for the 300 acre site and site clearing for the Plant’s construction. The BQ (Bill of Quantities) is being decided by the contractors for the LNG Plant’s construction in the next 90 days. By then construction should begin in the Second Quarter of 2013 as per the newspaper report, the reason for the Project’s looming Timeline.

Now that we’ve reached the point where it’s slowly becoming a reality, here’s a rundown in point form on why the LNG Project’s important as cribbed and condensed frommy blog article entitled Senator Phillip Paulwell chooses LNG over Coal - Power Engineers in Steven King's Graveyard Shift” and my Geezam blog article “JPS Co to build Jamaica’s first Gas Turbine Power Plant in St. Catherine”:

1.      LNG is cleaner burning in combustion engines than Oil
2.      It’s easier to store than Oil or Coal as it’s a compressible liquid
3.      It’s easily transported using pipelines, as opposed to Coal using Trucks, large Trailers or Trains
4.      LNG only poses an explosion danger; Coal poses a health and dust nuisance problem
5.      LNG has a higher Energy Density than Gasoline or Diesel as stated in the article “Energy Density”, viewed Monday January 18 2010 by WikiPedia packing 53 MJ/kg compared to Diesel and Gasoline sporting figures of 46.2 MJ/kg and 46.4 MJ/kg respectively
6.      It can also be used as fuel in Motor Vehicles as stated in my blog article entitled “LPG and the Challenger Transport Co. Ltd.  - A Cheaper Fuel” and “Auto LPG as a Motor Vehicle Fuel
7.      It can be used as fuel for Public Transport, saving the GOJ billions of dollars in fuel costs as stated in my blog article entitled “JUTC, Challenger and LNG - Journey to the Center of the Earth
8.      LNG fuel is actually sustainable and can be made in commercial quantities via the Anaerobic digestion of organic matter by Methane producing Bacteria as per my blog article entitled “Alternative Energy and the Caribbean - Peak Oil in 2015 and The Day After Tomorrow
9.      Improved production at companies that use vast amounts of energy to produce their products e.g. Bauxite at JAMALCO as mentioned in the article “US$3-B infrastructural upgrade coming with Natural Gas - Robertson”, published Sunday, October 03, 2010, The Jamaica Observer and explained in my blog article entitled “Alternative Energy and Distributed AEPP - The GoldenEye Talk Shop
10.  Generators that use LNG are Gas Turbine Generators. These Generators can be easily modified to use Hydrogen Gas in the future as per my blog article entitled “Hydrogen Economy and Natural Gas - Wall-E and the Rise of the Oceanospirillales Microbes.
11.  Gas turbine Generators can enable Jamaica to eventually transition to the so-called Hydrogen Economy in the future using Hydrogen Gas obtained from the electrolysis of Seawater to produce Hydrogen and Oxygen, with Salt and other minerals as byproducts as per my blog article entitled “UTECH partners with GOJ and UWI to develope Hydrogen Cooking Gas Cylinders - EU Funded 3 Year Project is Chasing Mavericks to push Jamaica into the Hydrogen-Electron Economy”.


Truly, Jamaica’s now on the Path towards lower Energy costs that’ll make Jamaica competitive and thus attractive to FDI (Foreign Direct Investors). Not to mention local Business and Manufacturers more encouraged borrowing to continue investing if this most important of inputs is reduced in cost. We’re on our way towards The Impossible (2012)Promised Land (2012).
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