Reconfiguration of system, losses – a major priority for GPL’s new CEO

DPI, GUYANA, Thursday, April 05, 2018

With only two months in office, newly appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Guyana Power and Light Incorporated (GPL), Albert Gordon is working assiduously to address issues with supply of power.

One of the first steps that will be taken is the execution of major reconfiguration and re-conductoring of the generation system. Gordon said that this will significantly reduce power outages.

The CEO was at the time addressing an audience including Minister of Public Infrastructure, David Patterson, media operatives and GPL’s official at a cocktail reception at Pegasus last evening.

Newly appointed CEO, GPL, Albert Gordon.

“The biggest challenge is keeping the lights on, there are different contributors to that one being the existing infrastructure and the configuration of the system…..there are serious deficiencies in the system and a certain amount of investment are needed to address it. So the first priority is to keep the lines up and we have to do major reconfiguration and re-conductoring,” Gordon explained.

The CEO pointed out that currently, at many of the substations, the distribution lines are connected directly to the generator, this, he said, is not the way in which a system is supposed to be configured. Gordon outlined that instead, during the configuration process “you generate, increase the voltage to high voltage lines, move it to a substation, release the voltage and then distribute to customers that way the generator is shielded from events that may happen on the distribution lines.”

Additionally, reducing the power company’s losses from the current 29.6 percent to as low as possible is another area of priority.  This will be addressed under the third component of GPL’S Power Utility Upgrade Programme (PUUP), which deals with addressing loss reduction and improving the supply of electricity distribution. Notwithstanding this, efforts will also be placed on improving the generating capacity.

Gordon said some US$110 million is required to address these deficiencies and he has already approached the government for assistance in securing the finances.

According to Gordon, these efforts are in sync with GPL’s revised mission and vision which are consistent with government’s policy of supporting the sustainable development of Guyana.

The power company’s new mission looks at addressing social, economic and environmental issues. “GPL will support the sustainable development of Guyana by providing reliable and affordable energy services to all customers, comply with all applicable standards and regulations, develop its systems and operating and systems in a manner that is sustainable and efficient, continue to develop the skills and capability of staff,” Gordon underlined.

Meanwhile, the vision is to be a world-class utility service, ensuring that success exceeds the expectation of customers. The acronym SUCCESS (Service quality, Uptime-reliability, Coverage, Efficiency, Safety, health & security, Sustainability) was developed to measure this vision and will be monitored by consultants.

Minister Patterson, in brief remarks, officially welcomed the new CEO noting that he is the candidate best suited to address the deficiencies at the power company. The minister pointed out that Gordon (who is not GPL’s first non-Guyanese CEO), has been apprised of the government’s priorities and will take them onboard.

“…He visited all the substations and assessed the systems, personnel and was briefed on the high expectations the government has of him. So far, he has lived up to those expectations and it’s my responsibility to support him,” Minister Patterson said.

The Public Infrastructure Minister further stated that the establishment of GPL’s new board will be finalised soon. He assured that it consists of, “likeminded Guyanese who will have the nation heart”.

Gordon, who assumed office in February, is the holder of an MBA from the University of the West Indies and has years of experience in both electricity and water utility fields among others.

 

By: Ranetta La Fleur

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