Caribbean Utilities Company has reported a
5 per cent decrease in net earnings for the second quarter of 2011 compared to
the same period last year, citing less consumer consumption due to fewer
commercial accounts, lower residential rental occupancy, cooler weather and
higher diesel fuel prices.
Net earnings for the three months ending 30
June were $5.9 million, a decrease of 5 per cent compared with the $6.2 million
reported to be earned during the same three month period ending 30 June, 2010.
A 3 per cent decline in kilowatt hour
sales and higher general and administration, consumer service and transmission
and distribution costs were partially offset by an increase in other income and
lower finance charges for the second quarter of 2011 when compared to the same
period in 2010.
“The economic downturn in the Cayman
Islands has negatively impacted energy usage and electricity sales,” said
Richard Hew, CUC’s president and chief executive officer. “The impact of recent
high diesel fuel prices on electricity rates has exacerbated the situation and
remains a concern for CUC.”
Electricity sales for the second quarter of
2011 totalled 144.9 million kilowatt hours, a decrease of 3 per cent compared
with 149.8 million kilowatt hours during the same period in 2010. Sales for the
second quarter were depressed by a reduction in commercial customer accounts,
lower residential rental occupancy, cooler weather and customer conservation
The average temperature for the second
quarter of 2011 was 83.3 degrees, one degree lower than the 84.3 degree average
reported in 2010.
The total number of CUC customers as of 30
June, 2011, was at 26,387, an increase of 2 per cent compared with the 25,817
customers reported for the same period a year ago. CUC reported a net increase
of 126 customers for the second quarter of 2011, consisting of 131 residential
connections and five commercial disconnections.
However, despite an increase in the overall
number of customers, average monthly kilowatt hour consumption for the
residential and commercial categories has declined from 1,744 kilowatt hours
for the first half of 2010 to 1,687 kilowatt hours for the first half of 2011.
“We continue to actively seek viable
alternative energy sources to reduce the Islands’ dependency on diesel fuel for
electricity generation,” Mr. Hew said. “In the short term we are advising
customers to conserve energy and are providing assistance through energy