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As the price of fuel continues to escalate on the world market, Barbadians have been benefiting from the new investment made by The Barbados Light & Power Company Limited. This is according to Light & Powe's Managing Director, Andrew Gittens who stated that the operation of the new low speed diesel generators at Spring Garden since the end of May has resulted in significant savings in fuel costs which has been passed directly to customers through the fuel clause adjustment. A customer who is presently paying a bill of $100 would have paid approximately $119.00 if these generators were not in operation.

However, while these benefits have been accruing to Barbadians, Gittens cautions that we may not yet have seen the full impact of the increasing fuel prices on the world market and there are indications that prices may rise to even higher levels in the short to medium term. So while we at Light & Power will continue our efforts to control our costs, customers also need to play their part by using electricity and their other energy products as efficiently as possible. 

He continued: I am sure that by just being observant and using appliances wisely, there is the opportunity in many households to decrease energy consumption by 5 to 10% with simple measures like turning off lights and appliances when not in use and by following manufacturers guidelines for the use and maintenance of appliances. It all adds up. 

Even greater benefits can be achieved by installing more energy efficient lighting and appliances when these are being replaced. Consumers should not only look at the up front cost when purchasing an appliance but instead carefully consider the life cycle cost which includes its electricity, maintenance and other operational costs.

When the Low Speed Diesels were being installed, Light & Power had indicated that customers bills could be 10% or more lower than what they would have been if these engines were not in operation. At the time it was hoped that the price of fuel would have stabilized and the use of these engines would have resulted in reduced bills for customers. However, the price of fuel has continued to escalate and instead of the price reducing significantly, the impact of these new generators has been to stabilize the fuel clause adjustment. In August, the fuel clause adjustment was 17.0071 cents per kilowatt hour a slight reduction from 18.2070 in April, despite the increase in fuel prices.