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Prime Minister touts Amaila Falls as great energy saver

Under the theme “Working to secure a clean Energy Future” the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) held an Architecture Seminar and Energy Exhibition at the Umana Yana, High Street, Kingston Thursday.
The seminar was intended to promote energy efficient building designs. Exhibitors present at the event were Starr Computers Inc., Gafsons Industries Ltd., Farfan and Mendes Ltd., Guyana Power and Light Inc. (GPL) and National Hardware Guyana Ltd., who all exhibited energy saving lighting products, and solar panels.
Architectures that spoke at the seminar were Head of Architecture at the University of Guyana, Lennox Hernandez, Kurt Gonsalves, William Harris, and Bernice Nichols.
Prime Minister Samuel Hinds, who is also the Energy Minister, disclosed that Guyana does not have the funding to support renewable energy sources for electricity. Instead, the preference is for energy renewable resources, “and in our taxation system we have within that, incentives to encourage and to promote renewable energy sources for electricity.”
The Prime Minister also underscored that the Amelia falls that is set to be built in region eight will be ground breaking in the new year, “and four years after that we will be having in the order of 150 megawatts of hydro power available which would meet nearly all our electricity requirements.”
He added that as the years go by after the implementation of the Amaila Falls, and depending on the industry in Guyana, the country will be looking at a 90 per cent conversion from petroleum-based fuel to hydro power as the source of power in Guyana. Hydropower will result in reduced fossil fuel dependence, he said.
According to Prime Minister Hinds, comparatively, electricity prices in Guyana relative to the rest of the world are in the middle range and citizens should try to conserve energy usage where necessary.
Speaking on GEA’s role in the energy sector was Chief Executive Officer of Guyana Energy Agency, Mahendra Sharma, who said that the foundation of Guyana energy policy rest on three keys. The first is to provide sustainable energy at the lowest possible cost with adequate energy security, secondly, to explore opportunities for alternative energy sources and finally to encourage the effective and efficient use of energy.
Sharma disclosed the purpose of Energy Week 2010, is to promote awareness of energy and energy saving opportunities.
Speaking on the mandate of the GEA, he said that the energy entity encourages the development of alternative energy sources, and that in collaboration with the office of Prime Minister, GPL, the Ministry of Education “along with several other key stakeholders have been actively researching and disseminating information on the effective and efficient use of energy through seminars like this, television, radio and newspaper advertisements and brochures.”
He added that GEA has been focusing on key areas such as, appliances, lighting, transportation, and building designs, while the seminar to promote energy efficient designs is the next level of exploratory dialogue in keeping with the GEA’s mandate, and the first step toward the creation of guidelines to making homes more energy efficient.
On the topic of savings, Sharma said that the simple replacement of the inefficient mercury vapour lamps with an outdoor Compaq florescent lamp that is operated about ten hours a day throughout the year has real savings, since consumers savings will be equivalent to $30,000 per lamp a year.
Another example is the replacement of the 60 watt incandescent bulb with a 30 watt Compaq fluorescent lamp that operates approximately four hours a day for the entire year. This will assist consumers to save $3,690 per bulb yearly.
At the event, one of the exhibitors was Starr Computers who had an ideal power supply for computers made from solar panels and various other items for energy saving computers that the company also produces.
Upon closer inspection it was disclosed that x-finity solar station is valued at $269,000. The system comprises a 170 watt panel system connect to a battery and inverters.
“This system can power our standard x-finity computer which is energy saving, and the cost is recovered based on the current pricing of electricity. It is recoverable within six years, and the system lasts for 25 years,”   Starr representative Michael Mohan said.
He added that on the Renewable Energy end of the efforts, if government would take a page from the European strategies and partner with GPL and the business sector by promoting “on-grid” Solar Installation, this would encourage private investors to install more Solar Panels at an economical cost and, help reduce the load on GPL.
This methodology will help Guyana with savings in foreign exchange and reduce pollution from fossil fuel.

Source:www.kaieteurnewsonline.com



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