Gov’t improving GPL grid as it invests in ‘transformative’ gas-to-energy project


The government has allocated $95.7 billion to the energy sector this year and though huge investments will go towards the Wales gas-to-energy project, Minister within the Ministry of Public Works Deodat Indar said the existing Guyana Power and Light (GPL) grid is being improved.

“The budget has provisions to change out hundreds of transformers.

“We will stabilise the power between now and then, and we are making sure that we deal with the grid as well,” Indar said during a post-budget panel discussion hosted by the News Room.

Why is this necessary?

Minister within the Ministry of Public Works Deodat Indar

The main power grid, known as the Demerara Berbice Interconnected System, is operated by GPL and supplies a majority of Guyana’s energy needs.

However, the transmission system is an old, faulty one that needs constant repairs. Faults in the system lead to power outages or ‘blackouts’ that are a bugbear to consumers.

With growing energy needs locally- be it from new houses, malls or industrial sites- GPL has been installing additional capacity to satisfy demands. New generators were installed at the end of last year and GPL currently has the capacity to generate about 180 megawatts of power.

As Guyana’s energy needs continue to grow, however, the government is developing the new Wales gas-to-energy project on the West Bank of Demerara (WBD). Natural gas produced in the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana will be brought onshore to fire a power plant at Wales, producing cheaper energy. This project is expected to provide 300MW of power on its own.

A total of $80 billion is budgeted separately to advance the flagship 300 MW gas-to-energy project.

Minister of Natural Resources Vickram Bharrat, in the post-budget discussion, described this project as one of the most “transformative” projects in Guyana. He explained that it won’t only generate cheaper electricity but it is expected to stimulate Guyana’s manufacturing sector, create new jobs and attract more investments.

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