My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Alternative Energy and Trinidad and Tobago - Strange Encounters of the Third Kind

Monday, November 8, 2010

Alternative Energy and Trinidad and Tobago - Strange Encounters of the Third Kind

Reform must come from within, not from without. You cannot legislate for virtue.

Cardinal Gibbons, Address, 1909

It seems that everyone is up in arms about Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago Kamla Persaud-Bissessar recent comments with regards to any offers of emergency assistance to St. Lucia, should Tropical Storm Tomas have made landfall as stated in the article “Spineless Cowards!”, published Sunday November 7 2010 by Tyrone Reid, Sunday Gleaner Writer, The Sunday Gleaner.

Truly unfortunate and it may go a long way to explaining why the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago is yet to send any aid to Haiti, now with a confirmed death toll of seven (7) as stated in the article “Tomas claims seven Haitian lives”, published Saturday November 6 2010, The Jamaica Observer, despite dodging the bullet as stated in the article “Haiti dodges storm disaster as cholera toll rises”, published Saturday November 6 2010, by Reuters, Yahoo! News.

Though personally, I suspect the Americans may have used HAARP (High Altitude Auroral Research Project) to stop the hurricane in its tracks by simply punching a hole in the ionosphere and letting the higher intensity radiation through, heating up the sea water, making the hurricane stand still as it drank up the heat energy.

Thanks to the Earth’s rotation, which is from West to East, the Sun is now closer to the 33rd Southern Parallel (Tropic of Capricorn) and the Jet Streams now moving further towards the poles, following the Sun, the incision made by the microwave beam from HAARP curved upwards, if fired at the location where Tropical Storm Tomas was up to Thursday November 4th 2010 AD.

Hence a proffered explanation for the mysterious strengthening of Tropical Storm Tomas to a Hurricane of Category 1, followed the breadcrumb trail of heat pouring down from the “hole” in the ionosphere much as ants follow sugar or a snake stalks its prey via scent. Physics, say hello to Biology! Note to the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency): Tell Mr. Lynch to leave me alone. I know nothing; this is just a theory, ok. Thank you, Mr. President: you came through for Jamaica, unlike Trinidad and Tobago.

But about the “spineless coward” rant by Doreen Frankson in the above article, which is a completely unnecessary noise making, typical of women, who react with agony and emotion as opposed to rationalism typical of men “like them a get some good TLC”, to quote my now deceased girlfriend Audia Granston, a Seventh Day Adventist, an observation she used to chide me with while she was alive and recalling her SDA Church days – while she made her own noise.

Jamaicans will of course say that that is how Trinidad has been, ever since the days of Federation past, when Jamaica was on top and reveled of their success in the early 1960’s. Then the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago discovered Oil, got “rich an’ switch”, as we Jamaica would say and they decided to get revenge.

Others, of more sinister school of thought, will draw for race arguments to explain their reluctance to spend money to assist Jamaica in the event of an emergency, stating her opinions are typical of Indian people, which is not true, as, personally, Indian girls love me!

Still, others will comment that Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago Kamla Persaud-Bissessar is just mouthing off and her comments are more about political grandstanding than anything else, effectively an attempt to save face within her own political party and to the People of Trinidad and Tobago as polls show she is mighty unpopular since taking power, having not improved Trinidad’s lot in any significant way.

Thus her “nuffness” as we Jamaicans call it may be a means of reflecting a reality in her country, as they are indeed gripped by the effects of American Recession, as even they with their Oil Wealth have not escaped unscathed.

This would explain in part why the Opposition PNP (People’s National Party) and the ruling JLP (Jamaica Labour Party) have made no comment; she is not being disrespectful, but rather, her comments are a reflection of how bad things have gotten for not only the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, but for the wider Eastern Caribbean, our long ignored neighbours, whose islands are worst hit by the American Recession than we are, their Economies, like ours, tied heavily to Tourism.

“’Worst’ you say”, I hear the Jamaican and America vox populi chime, thinking of Cayman and Bahamas (possibly)? Yes “worst”, and my argument this time is simple, sweet and short, as I, John Public, put on my Economics, Geology and Petro-Chemical Hat and explain what should be as obvious as the nose on my face: Trinidad is broke and Trinidadian girls are coming.

I, John Public, as usual, have literally, a novel take on the whole thing: Trinidad is simply severely indebted, hence the brash comments by Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago Kamla Persaud-Bissessar. Their push towards Vision 2020 is, literally, running out of Oil.

This is evident from the fact that prior to the then Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago Patrick Manning stroll into power over previous Prime Minister Basdeo Panday on a platform of fighting corruption and promise of jobs for all, a promise of LNG (Liquid Natural Gas) was also made to then Prime Minister Portia Simpson-Miller to supply Jamaica with LNG, only to be recanted on in 2006 a stated in the article “No Trinidad LNG for Jamaica anytime soon”, published Friday December 15, 2006 by Linda Hutchinson-Jafar, Business Writer, The Sunday Gleaner.

This was also much to the dismay of Dr. Raymond Wright, the go-to man and consultant for the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica. But with all things political, the Global Economy does most of the talking, not fickle politicians. The Recession in the United States of America, which peaked in 2008, saw a downturn in Oil Exports and LNG business for the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago and increasing competition from the People’s Republic of China, the Middle East and the Far East (Singapore, Malaysia).

Countries now getting wind of a possible future demand for LNG by the United States of America, Europe and Asia, and thus beginning to cap LNG at the well head. Suddenly, the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago found that their LNG was too expensive to compete on a global scale, as they previously had guaranteed markets with the Americans.

The technology also changed, as previously regasification of the LNG, which is really a liquid form of Natural Gas used for transporting the fuel, was now possible thanks to ships that had portable regasification plants on-board to convert the LNG to CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) as stated in the article “LNG for Jamaica a national priority - Manning”, Published Friday June 26, 2009 by Linda Hutchinson-Jafar, Business Writer, The Sunday Gleaner.

CNG makes it more convenient for piping the Natural Gas, a mixture of long and short chain alkanes, alkenes and alkynes with trace amounts of Hydrogen sulphide and Carbon Dioxide, under pressure to storage tanks at the locations where the fuel is needed, such as Jamalco as per the plan of Senator James Robertson, Minister of Energy and Mining as stated in the article “US$3-B infrastructural upgrade coming with Natural Gas - Robertson”, published Sunday, October 03, 2010, The Jamaica Observer.

This, people, was a revision of the original PNP Plan and ironically, coincided with a suggestion I made to Nurse Gunning in the fall of 2003 at C&W while being made redundant and prior while working at Jamalco in 1998 on a Summer job at the Halse Hall, Clarendon Plant.

Coincidence? You decide.

JPS Co (Jamaica Public Service Company Limited), Jamaica’s sole Power Utility company, curiously themselves are very interested in using LNG as stated in the article “JPS Ponders using LNG”, published Thursday July 22, 2010 by Philip Hamilton, Gleaner Writer, The Jamaica Gleaner, as Gas Turbine Generators are cheaper to maintain, most cost effective and efficient, having less downtime between maintenance runs and can produce cheaper electricity, much to the satisfaction of the Private Sector and the Government of Jamaica, who is very much interested in getting their Economy going using lower cost energy sources.

Interestingly, their current generators at Hunts Bay Plant as well as other plants, which run on Bunker Seed Oil, can be easily converted to run on LNG, requiring seals and valves to be changed as well as removal of the Pre-Heater and the Turbo Charger, completely unnecessary in the case of LNG, which is easily convertible for combustion.

Like a good who-dun-it, as per the colourful American phrasing, Trinidad, aware of the Global situation of this under the newly instated Trinidadian Prime Minister Patrick Manning in 2009, recanted on the statements of the previous Trinidadian Administration as recorded in the article as stated in the article “LNG for Jamaica a national priority - Manning”, Published Friday June 26, 2009 by Linda Hutchinson-Jafar, Business Writer, The Sunday Gleaner, saying, and I quote “In those circumstances, the Government of Trinidad and Tobago now considers that a supply of LNG to Jamaica for the stimulation of investments in the alumina sector, to be a matter of national priority”.

A more detailed dissertation on the seriousness and gravity of the situation, with statistics in all its gory details as it relates to LNG can be seen from perusing the article “Rivalry sends Trinidad in search of New LNG Markets”, published Saturday July 4, 2009 by Linda Hutchinson-Jafar, Business Writer, The Sunday Gleaner, in which Chairman and CEO of BP Trinidad and Tobago (BPTT), Robert Riley, is quoted as saying to Business Interests in Port-of-Spain in 2009: “We have entered an era of increased competition and it can be argued that we no longer have or enjoy the first mover to market advantage that we have had. At BPTT, we refer to the new LNG entrants collectively as a wave because of the sheer volumes that will be added to the market”.

In short, competition is forcing them to change their tune last year, short of coming to Jamaica and begging them to use their LNG to make alumina cheaper and export to Trinidad and Tobago for their Alutrint smelter. Much as in any business sector, competition forces bitter political enemies to become very strange bedfellows, in this case competition with Trinidad and Tobago from LNG suppliers from the People’s Republic of China the Far and Middle East to supply LNG to the United States of America, Europe and Asia.

But it gets worse. Trinidad is not only unable to sell its LNG as it is too expensive, due to increasing supply in the unregulated LNG market, with new rivals popping up every six (6) months, but it now appears they only have ten (10) years of proven Oil Reserves left as stated in the article “Ten years left of LNG in T&T”, published Friday, July 16, 2010 BY RENUKA SINGH, The Jamaica Observer.

Worse, the possibility that the Government of Jamaica may actually be committing to a Venezuelan firm for their LNG supply at assured stable rates as stated in the article “LNG will always be cheaper for Jamaicans, says Colombian firm”, published Wednesday, October 06, 2010 by STEVEN JACKSON, Business Observer writer, The Jamaica Observer.

Guess my Trinidadian Friend on Irvine Hall was correct, as her father had told her that Trinidad and Tobago was running out of Oil. Rubbing more salt in the wound is the recent discovery of nearly three billion (3,000,000) barrels of Oil by Sagres Energy, the parent of Canadian firm Rainville Energy that had drilling rights in Jamaica since Thursday June 15th 2006 AD, announced Friday August 27th 2010 AD and reported in detail on Wednesday September 1st 2010 in The Jamaica Observer in the Pedro Banks area as stated in the article “Jamaica may have 3 billion barrels of Oil”, published Wednesday, September 01, 2010, The Jamaica Observer.

Dr. Raymond Wright, in an interview on Wednesday September 1st 2010 AD with the JIS (Jamaica Information Service), had expressed confidence that Sagres will secure the assistance of this equity partner before March 2011 AD as published in the article “Sagres yet to commit to Jamaica Oil drilling”, published Friday, September 03, 2010, The Jamaica Observer and as stated in the article “Wright affirms Oil potential”, published Friday September 3rd 2010 by The Jamaica Information Service, The Jamaica Financial Gleaner, The Jamaica Gleaner.

Thus Trinidad and Tobago knows that soon, electricity costs, a factor which they cannot control, will soon be lower in the next three (3) to five (5) years, as the Government of Jamaica is aware of the impending Global Crunch in Oil, more commonly called Peak Oil, by 2015 AD as stated in the article IEA official warns of shrinking oil supplies: Report”, Sunday August 2nd, 9:04 pm ET, AFP, Yahoo! News, and backed up by the dire warning in statements attributed to Sir Richard Branson of Virgin as stated in the article “World faces Oil Crunch by 2015”, published Sunday 14 February 2010, AFP, The Jamaica Herald.

This would make Jamaican Manufacturing competitive again in the future and as such, Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago Kamla Persaud-Bissessar cryptic words are more of a strained protest with regards to the turn of Global events, as the world is slowly turning its back on the Black Gold that made Trinidad rich. Subsidizing exportation of their goods to Jamaica and financing their invasion of Jamaica via Trinidad during our Economic collapse in the 90’s will soon be over in less than ten (10) years.

Now it is their turn to experience what we went through, and as corruption and nepotism within their own country threatens to sink them into a quagmire of debt, as happened to us. Like Jamaica, they may have to resort to setting up a FINSAC (Financial Sector Adjustment) of sorts to bail out CLICO and other connected Banks and all their debtors and creditors. The only thing holding back Jamaica right now is cheaper Electricity and the Banks which ungratefully, are still refusing to lower their Interest Rate Spreads.

Trinidad is effectively stuck, as with no natural resources other than Oil, a near non-existent Agricultural base (they import almost all their own food!) and Tourism, still seen as a Secondary Industry, only recently getting renewed interest as evident from recent advertisements and infomercials with regard to Trinidad and Tobago’s Natural Beauty, they need to transform their Economy away from subsidization of their Economy via Oil Profits fast.

It would also explain rumblings coming out The Twin Island Republic that suggest that they are considering going into the manufacturing of Solar Panels as stated in the article “Trini Govt looking into glass, Solarpanel Plant”, published Thursday September 30 2010, The Jamaica Observer, as apparently the Oil Crisis is that serious to the point that selling Photovoltaics [Solar Panels] is seen to be more profitable in the future than their gone-to-be gone Oil.

Oh, how the mighty have fallen!

Perhaps it may have something to do with the announcement a mere five (5) days later of plans by the White House to go Alternative, with Solar Panels to be installed on top of the White House roof as of the Spring of 2011 AD as stated in the article “White House to install rooftop Solar Panels”, published October 5, 2010 5:19 AM PDT by Martin LaMonica, CNET News - Green Tech

Specifically to generate Electricity and provide hot water for the Executive Mansion with Energy Secretary Steven Chu planning to replicate this concept to the other Government Agencies as a symbol (and not to mention practical money saver!) of a cutting of America from its wasteful Electricity and Water practices and a move to a more Sustainable and Renewable based economy.

The Government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago needs to start with budget cuts, as Jamaica post-JDX and other Developed and Developing Countries are doing and have done, as there are no sacred cows, even in Jamaica as per the opinion article “Budget Cuts and Sacred Cows”, published Sunday November 7 2010 by Gordon Robinson, Contributor, The Jamaica Gleaner. I know this, and yet I am only just a Mathematician, the underpinnings of Economics.

The other countries in the Eastern Caribbean, floundering because of a reduction of tourist arrivals from the United States of America and Natural disasters such as Tropical Storm Tomas, must be incredibly happy (like Jamaica, under the quiet) that the Americans have still voted to keep the embargo in place against Cuba, despite the UN symbolically voting against the United State of America as suggested in the article “U.N. assembly votes to end U.S. embargo against Cuba”, published Tuesday October 26 2010, CNN News.

This as anything otherwise would have resulted in them going completely bankrupt, as Cuba is crime free, has more natural unspoilt resources, better hotels, more tourist centric society and the US Dollar get more bang for buck in the land where cigars are rolled on the thighs of  muy caliente  y bonita Cuban women. Thus, a shift to Alternative Energy by Barbados is on the cards, as they are currently in talks with the IDB (Inter-American Development Bank) to fund their Renewable Energy Plans as stated in the article “Barbados turns to renewable energy with IDB help”, published Friday, October 01, 2010, The Jamaica Observer

This is a move being copied across the rest of the Eastern Caribbean, as they are also looking for cheaper LNG to be a part of their energy mix, thus leaving Trinidad and Tobago all alone with their soon-to-run-out Oil and LNG than nobody wants at such high prices.

This is truly a Strange Encounter of the Third Kind, as the signals from Trinidad [represented by the aliens in the movie] who have invaded Jamaica, thanks to easy loan financing greased by CLICO and banker Lok Jack as stated in the article “Arthur Lok Jack: The Human face of 'Trinidad’s Invasion'”, published Wednesday, September 29, 2010 By Moses Jackson, The Jamaica Observer may soon be returning the companies they purchased from us in the 1990’s [represented by the people they aliens eventually returned] as their Economy, fast running out of money from fluctuating Oil and LNG prices, begins to see the future less clearly, Vision 2020 beginning to look a lot more like Vision 2030.

Jamaicans, if you ever wanted more evidence that the strategy that Jamaica is on is working, this is more evidence that it is; when you enemies become jealous of you, knowing full well you future potential is not their to control. There is no need to boycott Trinidad and Tobago’s products; they will soon disappear by themselves, replaced by cheaper Jamaican products.

Mrs. Doreen Frankson, the lone voice, has misread everything. The Opposition PNP and the ruling JLP are not cowards, but politically tactful as the obvious is clear. A little information for the politically unsavvy Doreen Frankson: Trinidad and Tobago cannot help us, because they are broke.

They are also jealous little people and are very evidently green with envy of our JDX success as so tactfully reported by The Jamaica Observer columnist Al Edwards in the article “JDX successful beyond expectations – Pamela Cox”, published Saturday November 6th 2010 by Al Edwards, The Jamaica Observer and assistance from the People’s Republic of China in terms of JDIP (Jamaica Development Infrastructure Program)

Soon to be spent as stated in the article “JDIP hits the road in two weeks - Flood damage bill now $20b”, published Thursday, October 28, 2010, The Jamaica Observer, a sure fire post Tropical Storm Nicole, “bad gyal” Nicole fixer-upper and pathway to future Economic and Political success for the JLP. 

All things that Prime Minister of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago Kamla Persaud-Bissessar is desperately short on, along with the ten (10) year Oil projections. Strange Encounters of the Third Kind indeed may soon be occurring, as Trinidadians, mainly female Geology and Geography students at the University of West Indies, knowing that their Oil Industry is already in the doldrums, may soon be competing with Jamaican women for Jamaican men in order to stay in Jamaica, as soon as Dr. Raymond Wright, with the help of Sagres, determines with absolute certainty, that Jamaica does indeed have Oil.

Trinidadian girls, just visit my facebook page and be my friend, as I like Indian women like Senator Lisa Hanna and Kim Kardashian! Newspapers please print my number!

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