The Regulatory Authority accused Belco yesterday of deliberately misleading the public about emissions from its North Power Station.

The RA, in a public statement, said that senior representatives at Belco had “made concerted efforts to misinform the public” and that a representative had been “selective” about what information was shared.

“The representative openly stated that their plant was supposed to burn natural gas, not what it is burning today,” the RA said. “They further assert that this is the genesis of the problems they are facing with respect to the plant and soot emissions.”

The RA said that in 2017, Belco had said that it had a “dire need” to build the NPS, which would be a dual-fuel plant capable of using oil or liquefied natural gas.

“Belco suggested that oil would be deployed in the first instance and if at some point in the future the country decided to go towards LNG, the plant could then be readily updated to switch to the LNG.

“The RA requested further information from Belco, and based on all the information received from Belco the RA approved Belco’s proposal in its entirety for $118 million to build the NPS and their battery system. No modifications were made to their proposal, and therefore the RA expected that Belco would deliver what it promised.

“Yet, after receiving permission from the RA, Belco built the North Power Station to optimise LNG first. It made the decision based on its assumption that the public and the RA would readily accept liquefied natural gas for energy generation at that time.

“However, when the RA conducted several public consultations on the Integrated Resource Plan proposal, which Belco created, and several alternative generation proposals from the public, there was little support for LNG.”

The statement added that the RA took no position regarding the safety of LNG in Bermuda, and that “any representations that the RA provided erroneous information to the public regarding the safety aspects of natural gas are incorrect”.

“The RA advises that if the issue is that the Belco plant was configured for natural gas and now has been retrofitted for liquid fuels, which is still problematic, Belco should address technical issues and mechanical issues with the vendor and hold them accountable to make the necessary repairs as a matter of urgency,” the statement continued.

“Finally, the RA cautions Belco about making any further misleading statements to the public regarding the NPS. If it continues to do so, the RA will consider all options available to it.”

Wayne Caines, a government MP who became Belco president in December 2020, said that Belco was committed to reducing emissions and adopting alternative energy.

He added that natural gas was on the table as a substitute but ruled out under the Regulatory Authority’s Integrated Resource Plan.

“When planning for the North Power Station, the intention was to use natural gas as a fuel, but the Integrated Resource Plan process eliminated natural gas as a fuel source,” he said.

A spokesman for the Ministry of Home Affairs said that the matter was one for the RA.

However, he added: “It should be noted that any approval must be consistent with the integrated resource plan published in 2019.

“The IRP does not mention LNG. Furthermore, LNG is not the preferred choice of power generation for Bermuda’s future.”'

Bermuda’s greenhouse gas emissions need to reduce 60% by 2030 to align with international efforts to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees centigrade. If warming exceeds this level, the risks of ocean acidification along with several other environmental threats to the island can increase significantly. It is also important to acknowledge the fact that there are communities surrounding our existing electricity generating power plant that continue to endure health, property and environmental challenges due to their proximity to fossil fuel smokestacks. Addressing this should be a matter of national interest and attempts to find solutions should be pursued with urgency.

In light of these realities, Greenrock is working hard to produce the data and research required to accelerate the deployment of affordable renewable energy. Of the various renewable technologies available to Bermuda, offshore wind and solar have consistently been identified as the most mature renewable energy technologies that are suitable to achieve this goal.

Greenrock welcomes the progress that has been made to date, by the Bermuda Government and the Regulatory Authority, in considering offshore wind as a key potential element of a sustainable, low carbon energy system for Bermuda. We now seek to build on this work and accelerate progress through working with a UK based engineering company, BVG Associates (BVGA), who have over a decade of expertise in delivering offshore wind.

Working with BVGA, we have identified a series of studies, which are now instrumental in progressing an offshore wind project in Bermuda:

  • An independent review of work carried out to date, including a comparison with offshore wind industry good practice, and the identification of priority actions required to help understand if offshore wind is viable for Bermuda
  • A detailed cost of energy assessment, to determine with confidence the likely range of costs for electricity that could be delivered by an offshore wind farm in Bermuda
  • Modeling of Bermuda's electricity system, to understand the combination of technologies that will be required to deliver an affordable, reliable and low-carbon electricity supply that contains large amounts of intermittent renewable energy
  • Industry standard wind resource assessment
  • Industry standard spatial assessments, to complement existing work being done in this area
  • An offshore wind roadmap, outlining step-by-step how an operational offshore wind farm can be delivered in Bermuda
  • If the outcome of these studies is successful, Greenrock also plans to initiate a revenue-grade (Light Detection and Ranging) LIDAR wind data collection campaign
  • These studies will help to determine if offshore wind is technically and commercially feasible for Bermuda, how much electricity from offshore wind is likely to cost, and assuming it is feasible they will also outline how Bermuda can deploy offshore wind in line with industry good practice.

We are pleased to announce that the first of these studies has now been completed, and is available on our website for key stakeholders and the general public to review. To review the study or find more information about the work we are doing around offshore wind, please visit our website

This important work is only possible thanks to the tireless efforts of our active members, private contributions from our community, and generous donations from sponsors in the private sector. We would like to thank everyone who has contributed to making this work possible, and also to make it known that sponsorship opportunities are now available for the remaining reports and studies. This will help provide the continued financial support required to complete this work.

For all those interested in learning more about this initiative, Greenrock will be hosting an open forum in the BUEI Auditorium from 12pm - 2pm on Friday, July 22 featuring Director Chris Worboys and the Offshore Wind Experts that have been commissioned from BVG Associates. The goal of the forum is to discuss the data from the study that has been completed, present initial results from the second study exploring the cost of energy from offshore wind, answer questions about the project, explain how this research initiative can be used to accelerate renewable energy deployment in Bermuda, and share information about the funding required to complete the studies that have been planned in a timely fashion.

For questions about this statement or to arrange an interview to discuss this initiative further please call 441.747.7625 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute [BUEI], Keep Bermuda Beautiful [KBB]Greenrock, and the Bermuda National Trust are offering their thoughts on Earth Day 2022, which is set to be observed on Friday [April 22]...Continued [here

Bermuda’s environmental charities will band together on Friday to celebrate Earth Day – and have urged the public to do their part for the environment.

Greenrock, Keep Bermuda Beautiful, the Bermuda National Trust and other groups said they will release a list of 13 different environmental actions that anyone can do on April 22 to help make a difference.

The charity has challenged the public to use reusable bags, collect trash, plant trees, go for a nature walk, use zero-emission vehicles like bicycles, reduce electricity consumption or go meatless.

Eugene Dean, chairman of Greenrock, said: “The Earth Day Challenge is an opportunity for everyone, regardless of age, to engage in some form of environmental action.”

He added: “I’m going to try to do all 13 of them, and I encourage everyone to do what they can.”

Other groups supporting the effort include the Bermuda Underwater Exploration Institute, Beyond Plastics, the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences and the Bermuda Environmental Sustainability Taskforce.

Mr Dean said that Earth Day was launched in 1970 and is considered to be the start of the environmental movement.

He said: “Industrialisation and the smell of air pollution was linked to progress, and people had little knowledge of the harmful impact of polluted environments.

“Earth Day was responsible for raising awareness.”


As part of Earth Day, KBB will host clean-ups at 22 sites across the island with the assistance of eight corporate groups and 14 schools with 600 volunteers expected to take part.

Meanwhile Buy Back Bermuda – a collaboration between the Bermuda National Trust and the Bermuda Audubon Society – will formally open the Eve’s Pond Nature Reserve on North Shore in Hamilton Parish.

The property was purchased by the group eight years ago, and over the past two years the area has been cleared of invasive plants and the pond – previously filled in with sand from Flatts Inlet – has been restored.

Myles Darrell, the BNT head of natural heritage, said: “It’s an opportunity to learn more and engage with a beautiful space, made possible by the Buy Back Bermuda Team.”

He added that he was excited that Earth Day would bring people together and hoped it would help the public create positive habits that they can continue well beyond Friday.

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Greater use of renewable energy is a “big ticket” wish for an environmental campaign group, its chairman said today.

Eugene Dean was speaking as he urged residents across the island to switch off their lights at 8.30pm on Saturday to mark this year’s Earth Hour.

Mr Dean explained that the event was marked by millions of people all over the world to “inspire action and encourage us to show our support for the environment and for our planet”.

He added: “Really it’s the Earth that sustains us, so this campaign around Earth Hour is really in support of our future and our sustenance on the planet.

“Although Earth Hour in many regards – the turning off the lights for one hour – is a show of solidarity for people around the world, it’s really more than that.

“It’s also a catalyst for positive change.

“It’s a mobilising initiative that is meant to inspire people to act all throughout the year, to encourage legislative change that helps us to address the issues that we are all aware of as it relates to our one home.”

The campaigner said: “The big ticket item for us right now is really this transition to renewable energy.

“There has been a lot of conversation around it, we would like to see more action.

“We’re involved at a level where we’re doing things to try to push that agenda along because a lot of the environmental challenges that we’re facing now, as it relates to emissions and pollution and the side effects that come from that – the only way we’re going to address that is by dealing with switching to renewable energy.”

Mr Dean said that the Earth Hour Council included representatives from the corporations of Hamilton and St George, the Chamber of Commerce, Wedco and Belco.

He added: “We encourage everyone in the entire country to participate.

“It’s one hour with no power and, no, you don’t have to sit up in your house with all your lights off in complete darkness but we do encourage people to turn off any unnecessary lights, even businesses, even if it’s your outside lights.

“Restaurants we encourage to do things like candlelight dinners.”

Mr Dean said: “The key thing, though, is not just what we do during the hour it’s what we do beyond the hour.

“That’s why this year we’re producing what we’re calling Earth Hour Live, an Earth Hour live broadcast and that’s going to be from 6.30pm to 8.30pm.”

He added that the programme would cover environmental challenges, solutions and work that has already helped to address the problems.

Mr Dean said: “We’ve taken the position that change is possible.

“As Greenrock, our goal is to stand in that position to inspire others to join us in terms of making those changes.

“When we look at carbon emissions in the country, how do we lower them? We can transition into renewable energy generation.

“Our transportation systems are a major contributor to our carbon emissions – how do we get to zero-emission vehicles all throughout the island?

“Food security is a big issue that we face locally and all around the world. How can we use our available land space to grow crops that can sustain and feed us as people?”

Charles Gosling, the Mayor of Hamilton, said that the corporation had backed Earth Hour, now in its fifteenth year in Bermuda, “pretty much from the get-go”.

He added that lights outside City Hall would be switched off for an hour on Saturday from 8.30pm and that the works depot would also be in darkness for the event.

Mr Gosling said that during his tenure, the corporation changed the Bull’s Head car park lights to LED.

He added that solar panels were installed at the works depot and Pier 6 with more planned for Bull’s Head.

The mayor said: “Each and every one of those is going to have a long-term cost-saving impact on the cost of enjoying the city and for the ratepayer.

“We encourage all of our taxpayers to go along with this campaign.”

Mr Gosling said people could use the Earth Hour to think about how they can make commitments to protect the planet.

He added: “We do not have any do-overs with this world.”

Rebecca Martin, marketing and events manager at Wedco, said that a “lights out” event at Dockyard on Saturday would run during Earth Hour.

She explained: “We will encourage all our tenants and businesses in the area to participate as well by turning off all unnecessary lights and electrical fixtures.”

Ms Martin highlighted that restaurants and businesses would still be open as usual.

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