Government projects need more thought

I would like to comment on government’s proposal to borrow $15 million to install solar panels on 1,500 homes to help reduce the cost of electricity for those families.

I wonder if government has researched the long-term cost of maintaining those solar panels; the batteries, the strong roofs needed to support the panels. Most of those houses, I dare say, will be poorly constructed and getting on in age; thus being unsafe for solar panels.

This proposal in my view is only a vote-getting ploy, like storm shutters were in the 2009 general election.

If government wants to help people reduce the cost of their electricity, why doesn’t government reduce the import duty on the diesel consumed by CUC? Then everyone would benefit from a lower electricity bill.

It just seems that governments go ahead with projects not considering the long-term affects they will have on the public.

Take for instance the new government administration building. Just take a look at the long distance that the public has to walk from the parking lot to get to the building. The steps don’t even have a railing for senior citizens to hold on to. How could the Planning Department give that building a certificate of occupancy? If that had been a poor person trying to get a house, they would have had to install railings.

Thanks for the space and keep up the good work.

Edward C. Ebanks


  1. Government projects may require more thought but the provision of solar panels on homes in Cayman is smart.

    The writer questions; Long term cost for maintenance:
    Solar panels once installed are virtually maintenance free.

    Roof poorly constructed and unsafe for Solar Panels: If those homes stood up after Ivan I would dare say they will stand up to a bank of flat panels where load is distributed evenly. Plus, if the structure is unsound it should not be outfitted.

    The long time effect: Cost saving to the homeowner, lower omission of pollutants by CUC by having over a thousand homes partially of the grid, sustainable renewable energy in the event of fuel shortages.

    I don’t agree with borrowing to finance this project, but I fully agree with like projects being subsidized.

    Government lead to a more sustainable energy source could come in ways such a regulation, subsidy, or grant. But which ever process is used, better sooner than later.

    A national energy policy; with sustainable, renewable energy an objective is a must.

  2. Okay, and here is some other things to think about.

    1. Are the solar panels going to be hurricane proof. I can tell you right now, no. You cannot make those solar panels hurricane proof. Once a good cat 3 rolls in. Those panels will sustain damage most definitely. From repair to outright replacement. The house roofs may stay. But I can say with certainty, nothing bolted onto those roofs will.

    2. Theft. Once someone realizes, they simply need some pliers, and loosen a few bolts. voila….instant payday. What then?

    So what the government is saying is, we will pay indefinitely for solar panels for the underprivileged.

    And the government gets no value for their return. Just another additional cost to run government.