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Wind Power is Coming to Antigua

Sugar millAntigua St. john's - Antigua and Barbuda is a country which is famous for its beautiful weather, white and pink sandy beaches and endless tradewinds.  What may not be so well known is how integral wind is to Antigua’s very existence.

In centuries past, an entire industry was created by harnessing the power of wind. Antigua’s landscape is dotted with the ruins of sugar mills – important reminders of how wind can power an entire country.

Wind power plays another role for which Antigua is internationally known.  Strong breezes power the sails of boats from across the globe to its shores.  From Antigua Sailing Week to the many businesses that depend on the sailing industry, wind is at the root of this key economic generator.  Every day, thousands of people depend on the wind with each load of laundry.  Kite festivals and regattas are constant reminders of this abundant resource.



Worldwide, wind is being harnessed to generate electricity.

In the U.S., the great state of Texas has enjoyed up to 38% of its electricity generated by this infinite power supply. The Canadian province of Ontario now has an infrastructure which regularly sees 5% of the entire province powered by wind. Well over a million households are powered by wind in Ontario.

But the benefits wind-producing communities goes well beyond taking advantage of the power source. Once the infrastructure is in place, there is little need to negotiate crippling loans or cut rates for a resource; no more leaking tankers shipping in consumable oil; no more spills; no more contaminated soil; no more suffering the rates that are at the whim of international speculators.

Presently, Antigua is burdened by how its power is generated. Its residents endure the sharp end of two sticks. 

Not only is the entire electricity grid powered by one of the most expensive fuel sources in the world, but Antigua doesn’t supply its own resource. While developed nations continue to use less expensive fossil fuel sources, recent efforts focus on phasing them out and typically those nations at least extract their own resources.

Power generation, as it is done in Antigua today, is hindering the progress of the entire country.

Fortunately, Antigua is exploring alternative energy, as the country’s leaders are realizing the unending benefits. Imagine no longer requiring a steady flow of massive ships importing oil – How much does that cost? What is the impact of these behemoths on the environment and our shores? Imagine no longer endangering entire neighbourhoods by storing the many toxic chemicals that comprise oil and its many byproducts.

Imagine the new potentially exportable skills Antiguan technicians will learn to manage this 21st-century technology. Imagine the funds that will be freed up by not having to pay for one of the dirtiest fuel sources on the planet. Embracing wind is in keeping with Antigua’s 2011 National Energy Policy.  Wind power generation achieves the Governments own five stated goals:

    1.    Energy Cost Reduction
    2.    Diversification of Energy Sources
    3.    Electricity Reliability Improvement
    4.    Environmental Protection
    5.    Stimulate new Economic Opportunities

The U.S. company C-Net/Clayco was invited by the English Harbour community members to visit our beautiful island and determine the feasibility of using renewable energy as a substitute for their current fossil fuel burning sources. After a number of visits and carefully developed analysis, C-Net/Clayco’s findings confirmed the potential for such a program in Antigua.  C-Net/Clayco has since approached Antigua leaders to team with the country to develop a new wind power industry which will free Antigua from being under the boot of the international oil industry.


The two phase C-Net/Clayco proposal, estimates that costs for power will be reduced by approximately 20% by 2018 and the savings generated from current fuel consumption costs to power existing generators would cover all costs to develop and manage the renewable energy plants, plus, deliver nearly US $20,000,000 annually of additional savings which could go towards infrastructure improvements or other governmental obligations.
Wind power is clean. It utilizes a homegrown and infinite resource that belongs to the country and to its citizens. It empowers Antiguans with new marketable skills. It is exciting. Wind is the future of energy production and the C-Net/Clayco program could help us take a significant step into this future and help us to begin controlling our own destiny.



Reporting by Caribarena news, publishing by Ofer Shaked.

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14 Comments In This Article   

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What we need

#14 Skyewill » 2014-06-03 20:45

A combination of wind, Solar and LED That is where the savings is. LED lowers cost even more by it self than any of the other 2 by themselves
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Skyewill

SteadyJ & R. S. Baptiste

#13 skyewill » 2014-06-03 15:28

the technology works by first generating electricity in the traditional manner of a wind turbine. This power enables the entire water generating system to function.

The next stage sees air sucked in through the nose of the turbine via a device known as an "air blower".

All air trapped during this procedure is then directed through an electric cooling compressor situated behind the propellers. This contraption extracts humidity from the air, creating moisture which is condensed and collected.

The water gathered at this stage is then transferred down a series of stainless steel pipes, which have been specially modified to aid the water production process, to a storage tank in the base of the turbine.

Once there, the water is filtered and purified before it is ready for use and consumption.

One turbine can produce up to 1,000 liters of water every day, depending on the level of humidity, temperature and wind speeds
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skyewill

Wind power..yes. But let's not forget the true power of the wind

#12 AJ » 2014-06-03 14:11

I like this idea of using wind energy to supplement our power grid needs and to lower our utility bills, but we also have to remember that we live in a hurricane zone. For wind energy to be feasible for us, we would need to know that our wind power infrastructure could sustain the devastating effects of hurricane force winds. We can't invest millions to put up an array of wind energy turbines only to have them put out of commission by a hurricane a few years later.
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AJ

@skyewill,

#11 SteadyJ » 2014-06-03 12:53

My centiments exactly when it come a feasibility study. The remnants of all the old windmills all over the island if proof that wind power works.

@R. S. Baptiste.The desalination process has an insatiable appetite for electricity, so by reducing the cost of electricity the cost of desalted water is reduced. That is why APUA water division is largest user of electricity on island.
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SteadyJ

Wind Power is Coming to Antigua

#10 NIMBY » 2014-06-03 12:06

" A still tongue....." . While I am happy that wind MIGHT truly take its rightful place as an energy source in this country, I do note that gross inaccuracies in the reporting as to the history of the wind research in our nation. That is all I will say ...FOR NOW!
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NIMBY

RE: Wind Power is Coming to Antigua

#9 Morris » 2014-06-03 10:28

This is worth pursuing if ANU is really serious about energy efficiency, and ultimately energy independence. The cost savings will be realized in time.
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Morris

@ JPFarnsworth

#8 Morris » 2014-06-03 10:26

You have me cracking up. These folks just came to my office to see what was soo funny. Good one!
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Morris

We already have wind power

#7 JPFarnsworth » 2014-06-03 09:47

We've had wind power for years. Furnished by all the politicians.
Okay that's my joke for today. :lol:
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JPFarnsworth

RE: Wind Power is Coming to Antigua

#6 Nitpicky » 2014-06-03 09:38

wonder who getting the bribe, there is always a bribe somewhere. Right now people are awaiting the election results before commencing projects, that way they might not have to pay the bribe twice !!
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Nitpicky

Young Antiguans, We can do it.

#5 skyewill » 2014-06-03 08:46

A few months ago I shared my experience at Betty's Hope and these same 2 wind mills in the picture. I told you the during slavery, Plantation owner Codrington found that he could use wind to grind sugarcane and put wind mills all over the island in key areas. This to me is enough feasibility study. It’s a fact that we have trade winds and it’s constant. The young man who is instrumental in this wonderful idea is a son of the soil. His dad is from Sea View Farm and Mom from English Harbor. I invited Mr. Errol Bailey to come on CA and introduce himself; I hope he takes me up on it. He and his associates are serious and we should put pour full support behind this group. The collective all of us is greater than any one of us. Let’s make mutually investing in each other success one of our core values
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skyewill

RE: Wind Power is Coming to Antigua

#4 R. S. Baptiste » 2014-06-03 08:32

Genius,

What does wind generation have to do with water supply??? Can you clarify?
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R. S. Baptiste

Solar Energy

#3 TRUE ANTIGUAN » 2014-06-03 07:47

THIS IS A PROJECT THAT CAN BE HANDLED EFFECTIVELY, EFFICIENTLY AND ECONOMICALLY BY NATIVES.

This require absolutely no outside sources. How many native sons of the soil have been blocked when they initiated a like project?

Both political parties have down played the capability of Antiguans here......... sad but true

A prophet hath no honour in his own country
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TRUE ANTIGUAN

what?

#2 genius » 2014-06-03 06:34

You have got to be kidding. Antigua will have to wait until the government changes. Six years ago the board at APUA approved a 10MW windpower generator which would have significantly reduced the cost of electricity to consumers and also supply 2 million gallons of much needed water as a by product. The response of the Baldwin government was to reject the project and fire the board. We don't need to think outside the box, we need to change the box.
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genius

There is hope

#1 Cock Sparrow » 2014-06-03 04:15

I truly hope this initiative comes to past, Antigua needs to start thinking outside the box.
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Cock Sparrow

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