Although Bahamas Power and Light (BPL) is seeking to complete the nationwide implementation of its advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) initiative by the end of 2022, the project hinges on the successful closing of its rate reduction bond, BPL’s Director of Public Relations Quincy Parker said yesterday.
BPL is investing $30 million in the initiative, having already secured a vendor and completed the initial design for New Providence.
“The selection of a vendor and completion of a plan for New Providence mark a major milestone in our efforts to implement advanced metering infrastructure. Speaking high-level, the plan addresses the infrastructure requirements, system architecture and design,” Parker told Guardian Business.
“Implementation of this critical initiative is dependent on closing the rate reduction bond, for which BPL Chair Dr. Donovan Moxey has already elucidated a February 2021 timeline. Given that contingency, we cannot say with any certainty how far we would get with the implementation this calendar year.”
Parker said the initiative would provide numerous benefits to its customers, beginning with improved energy efficiency.
“Customers having access to their consumption information, as they now do on their BPL bills, enables better decision making with regard to energy consumption and immediate benefits for improved energy efficiency. AMI can provide the necessary information to both the customer and the utility to help improve energy efficiency and bring other operational benefits that will help BPL manage costs more effectively and improve customer service,” he said.
“Other benefits discussed in-house include improved data quality; automated, remote data collection and back office processing for billing, asset management and outage management; reduction in incoming calls, most of which are about billing errors; and the rescheduling of meter readings and/or reporting outages. Accurate remote data collection through AMI and interactive voice response technology can replace long hold times with instant, automated information, customer intelligence, revenue protection and more.”
BPL has also set of a goal of completing its Station D power plant and Clifton Pier substation to support electricity transmission and distribution by fall of 2022 and its liquefied natural gas terminal facility by summer 2023.