Participants in two pilot household energy-conservation and -efficiency workshops in Waterhouse and Greater Brown’s Town in Kingston are hailing the initiative as an effective undertaking, and have expressed the hope that strategies being introduced will significantly reduce their electricity bills.The workshops, which were staged by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Caribbean Clean Energy Program (CARCEP) in partnership with the Citizen Security and Justice Programme (CSJP) in the National Security Ministry on August 22 and 24, targeted some 60 women from low-income households, who were provided information on the value of energy conservation and efficiency.The workshops highlighted practical measures that can reduce energy usage in their homes and, in the process, generate significant savings, and also encouraged knowledge sharing within the communities.Gender specialist with the CSJP, Cordia Chambers-Johnson, said the agency welcomed the opportunity to partner with USAID on the initiative, noting that it will positively impact persons in the communities that CSJP caters to, who are most in need of the support.“Persons are excited for it, because they say electricity accounts for the highest household utility (expense) and they want to see how best they can reduce their energy consumption to see some savings,” she said.She indicated that CSJP will be extending its partnering on the programme to roll out workshops in additional communities.Mrs. Chambers-Johnson said CARCEP has also indicated its intention to support the Waterhouse residents in setting up a solar panel system on the multipurpose community centre that was constructed by the CSJP.This, she points out, will help to reduce the Centre’s dependency on the national power grid.Kresten Stewart, who participated in the workshop in Greater Brown’s Town, described it as “amazing”. She noted that, as a parent, it is important for her to save wherever she can in managing the household.“I am so happy, because this gave us a different view on how to conserve. It was very good, and we have started to see improvements already,” she said.Ms. Stewart said she has acquired energy-saving light bulbs and is looking to get a gadget to attach to her refrigerator to save energy. She pointed out that despite these inputs being initially costly, she recognises, through examples provided at the workshop, that they will be cost-effective in the long term.She also expressed appreciation for the presentations that provided guidance on the interpretation of electricity bills.A release from the USAID Caribbean Clean Energy Program said the workshops were rolled out as part of a wider community outreach initiative to aid the public with lowering residential energy consumption as one solution to lessening the country’s energy dependence.USAID CARCEP Chief of Party, Daniel Potash, was quoted as saying: “Jamaican household managers impressed me. They are taking up the goal of energy conservation, eagerly soaking up the advice of the seasoned experts and demonstrating understanding and resolve.” Story Highlights A release from the USAID Caribbean Clean Energy Program said the workshops were rolled out as part of a wider community outreach initiative to aid the public with lowering residential energy consumption as one solution to lessening the country’s energy dependence. Participants in two pilot household energy-conservation and -efficiency workshops in Waterhouse and Greater Brown’s Town in Kingston are hailing the initiative as an effective undertaking, and have expressed the hope that strategies being introduced will significantly reduce their electricity bills. The workshops highlighted practical measures that can reduce energy usage in their homes and, in the process, generate significant savings, and also encouraged knowledge sharing within the communities.
zoom London-based provider of integrated shipping services Clarkson PLC (Clarksons) saw a strong financial performance during the six months ended June 30, 2017, despite continued headwinds in the global shipping markets and broader global macro-economic environment.During 1H 2017, Clarksons’ revenue stood at GBP 156.8 million (USD 203.1 million), an increase of 6.5 percent compared to GBP 147.2 million (USD 190.6 million) recorded in the same period a year earlier.What is more, the group’s underlying profit before taxation rose by 12.4 percent to GBP 24.5 million in the first half of 2017 from GBP 21.8 million posted in the six-month period a year earlier.As explained, the first half of the year has seen a significant increase in spot broking revenues following an uptick in transaction volumes and a rise in dry cargo rates. This increase has gone some way to offset the lower revenues from the forward order book brought forward from previous years. The financial division has also performed strongly, following its successful second half of 2016. Growth has continued in the research division as well. The port services division traded flat as market activity remains depressed.“We are pleased with our performance so far in 2017, increasing revenue and volumes in difficult shipping and offshore markets. As we see signs of a rebalancing across some of the shipping markets, we are optimistic in our ability to capitalise on the upturn in the markets when it occurs, whilst maintaining the strength of the underlying business. Nevertheless, in the short-term, low activity in the newbuilding market and a predominance of spot over longer-term period business continues to limit forward visibility of revenues,” Andi Case, Clarksons’ Chief Executive Officer, commented.“Our solid cash position means that irrespective of market conditions, we are able to invest in the business for future growth, deliver increasing returns to shareholders and take advantage of strategic opportunities as they arise,” Case added.