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Hinterland residents trained in installation, maintenance of solar home systems

Residents from hinterland communities in Regions Two, Three, Four, Five and Six, on Friday last, completed a five- day training session with technicians from the Hinterland Electrification Unit of the Office of the Prime Minister. The purpose of the training sessions was to teach them how to install and maintain the 65 Watt solar systems that are to be distributed as soon as the training concludes. Towards this end, days one and two saw participants being taught the theory as it pertains to the basics in electricity and the installation of points, whilst days three to five saw participants being trained in the practical aspects.

The persons who are trained are expected to return to their respective communities and spearhead the installation which includes installing the panel itself on the outer part of the building and switches and bulbs internally. Over the next four to six weeks, two persons from each of 160 villages and clusters will be trained. Government has been significantly advancing the distribution of solar panels, under the Hinterland Electrification Programme, to ensure that hinterland communities benefit from electricity. Government has approved the procurement of approximately 11,000 systems, financed from the national treasury which will be distributed to indigenous communities across the country.

The solar home system will provide each home with power for lighting small household appliances and to generate income.  CEO, Hinterland Electrification Unit, Horace Williams, informed Toshaos at the 5th Annual Toshaos Conference, which concluded last month, that a team from the Office of the Prime Minister, would have been visiting communities to conduct training exercises at various levels, since residents would be the ones responsible for the systems’ upkeep once installed. Whilst the Ministry of Amerindian Affairs distributed 574 solar panels to 16 Amerindian communities in Regions One, Two and Nine under the Unserved Areas Electrification Programme, 1,750 hinterland homes have benefited from electricity, through solar panels under the US$28.2M Unserved Areas Electrification Programme, from 2002 to 2010.

The project which plays a critical role in achieving the Millennium Development Goal of ensuring environmental sustainability in Guyana will rectify the long-pervading inequity by providing access to clean and renewable energy throughout hinterland communities, thereby contributing significantly to Guyana’s overall Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS).  Allied to the Amaila Falls Hydropower project, the electrification programme’s implementation forms part of and is a major component of the LCDS geared at transforming the country’s economy by eliminating the country’s dependence on fossil fuels and rising fuel prices for electricity generation.  In so doing, the savings from the accelerating cost of imported fuel and resultant reduction in energy costs will play an important role in the strategy to secure Guyana’s low carbon economic development.

Category/ies:Guyana News.
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