Micro hydro, solar projects will not solve electricity woes – PSC official

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Government’s plan to develop small renewable energy sources across the country will not solve local electricity woes like high energy costs and frequent blackouts, private sector official Norman McLean said.

McLean, a former Chairman of the Commission, explained at the PSC’s 26th Annual General Meeting (AGM), that these energy issues affect not only domestic users but the business community, including foreign investors.

“Whilst we congratulate the government for its emphasis on the Green State Development Strategy (GSDS), based on solar and wind, those will not electrify and industrialise Guyana,” McLean stated.

The PSC official explained that the electricity generated from the hydropower projects and wind and solar farms will not be channelled to the national grid, and therefore, will not benefit the majority.

“The emphasis on small hydros such as Moca Moca, Kumu, Tumatumari, Eclipse Falls and others, can only electrify small communities,” he stated.

The flagship Amaila Falls hydropower project, which could have added more than 100 megawatts of power to the national grid, was shelved by the current administration.

The project could have resulted in cheaper electricity for the country. For years, high electricity prices have been a bugbear for the business sector.

Commissioner General of the Guyana Revenue Authority Godfrey Statia disclosed that 2016 IDB report on the Caribbean Private Sector showed that electricity issues make up 29% of the problems affecting the community.

And for Guyana, it seems that there is now no solution in the immediate future.

McLean recommended that the government invest in larger renewable energy projects. He even suggested that they restart Amaila.

Minister of Public Infrastructure David Patterson recently announced that funding has been approved for a number of small solar, wind and hydro projects across the country.

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