Durrant Pate/ Contributor
Local energy renewable company, Wigton Windfarm Limited has won a US$7.32 million Government of Jamaica (GOJ) contract as part of a joint venture team.
The joint venture partner is Innovative Energy Company Limited, which is a Jamaican-based vertically integrated energy company, whose team has over three decades of experience in the private energy industry.
They are contracted to the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries for the Design, Supply and Installation of Distributive Solar Photovoltaic Systems plus Storage at certain Essex Valley Agriculture Development Project locations.
The use of solar power is a part of the wider project to boost agricultural exports from Jamaica and drive growth in the sector by boosting the productivity of farms in the Essex Valley.
The contract awarded to Wigton and Innovative Energy Company seeks to offset the increased power required to irrigate the larger area of land under the Essex Valley Agriculture Development Project.
The work by the joint venture partners should result in reduced costs of irrigation for farmers given that the use of solar power will offset the increased power required to irrigate the larger area of land.
The project is also aimed at improving drought resilience by improving irrigation and access to 700 hectares of land, increasing the area under irrigation by 50 per cent.
The project will train 200 farmers to use improved production technologies and market their products to international markets, whilst also ensuring this is sustainable and climate-friendly.
When the project is completed, more than 700 farmers operating on 810 hectares of land in the Essex Valley region will benefit from an irrigation system that will deliver 1,700 cubic metres of water per hour.
Farmers will also benefit from associated marketing facilities and farmer advisory services.