Govt will ensure citizens enjoy reliable electricity supply – Minister Harmon

DPI, Guyana, Friday, April 6, 2018

Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, at his weekly post-Cabinet press briefing, on Thursday, said that the government will do what is necessary to ensure citizens enjoy a more reliable supply of electricity.

Minister of State, Joseph Harmon.

Newly appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Guyana Power and Light Incorporated (GPL), Albert Gordon had said that a US$110M may be the answer to the country’s blackout woes. The CEO was speaking at a cocktail reception at the Pegasus Hotel, Kingston on Wednesday, April 04. Gordon said that he has already approached the government for assistance in securing the finances.

When asked if the government will be considering the power company’s request for financial assistance, Minister Harmon said that the matter has not reached to Cabinet for deliberation, “but certainly we will do what is necessary to ensure that our citizens have a continuous renewable supply of energy for domestic and for industrial use”.

The State Minister explained that the government is already reviewing several forms of reliable energy supply. “And so, what GPL is putting out now is a futuristic position… not just to fix the situation but to give you a certain level of power that is assured, sustainable, and that you can plan your lives around it and that is the directions we are going”.

In his presentation of the 2018 budget, Finance Minister, Winston Jordan had stated that Guyana’s Nationally Determined Contribution under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), specifies that the country has to develop a 100 percent renewable energy supply by 2025. Minister Jordan assured that the government will honour that commitment.

The government has been exploring a comprehensive energy mix with natural gas being actively considered as a major component. These include the possibility of hydropower projects at Kumu and Moco Moco Falls.

Further, government buildings, such as ministries, schools, and health centers continue to be outfitted with solar photovoltaic panels to reduce government’s dependence on the national grid.

To date, some 70 buildings have been equipped with solar panels resulting in a 1.86 gigawatt of power savings. This year, another 74 buildings will be equipped. Also, thus far 10,427 light-emitting diodes (LED) lamps and 3,766 motion sensors have been placed in 46 buildings. In 2018, emphasis will be placed on installing an additional 10,610 lamps and 1,486 motion sensors.

These initiatives stem from the 2017 National Budget, as part of the government’s move towards a ‘Green Economy’ which was adopted since assumption to office in 2015.

 

By: Synieka Thorne

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