Georgetown, October 05, 2013: After more than one year since the launch of Guyana’s first grid-connected solar photovoltaic net-metering system, the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) has saved more than one million Guyana dollars in electricity costs; thereby contributing positively to the environment by avoiding the release of more than 9,740kg of carbon dioxide (a greenhouse gas), while at the same time demonstrating that GPL’s grid is stable enough and the metering mechanism is capable of facilitating a net-metering platform.
Guyana usually receives abundant sunshine and has, for many years, been using solar photovoltaic panels for a number of applications, primarily in remote areas without access to a grid.
The Guyana Energy Agency, with support from GIZ, the German Society for International Cooperation, and funding from the Austrian Development Cooperation, installed an 8.46kW Grid Tie Solar Photovoltaic Demonstration Project in 2012 at a cost of G$6.9 million.
According to Dr. Mahender Sharma, CEO of the Guyana Energy Agency, “…the system was installed to promote the use of renewable energy in Guyana, gain understanding of grid tie technologies and demonstrate the use and application of solar photovoltaic grid tie technology”.
The energy supplied from the solar panels is about 20% of the energy required by the load of the building. During a regular business day, the grid-tie inverter senses the amount of energy coming from the solar panels, measures the amount of energy being consumed by the building, then takes the difference from the grid. On holidays and weekends, when the load of the building is less than the power supplied from the solar panels, most of the energy is supplied to the grid. The grid-tie inverter is also designed to quickly disconnect from the grid if the utility grid goes down.
Currently, the system is operating on a net-metering arrangement with GPL using the existing Itron meter. A module upgrade was sourced and installed, allowing the existing meter to now read energy received from the grid, energy supplied to the grid and net energy consumed by the load of the building
GEA is committed to its vision of ensuring Guyana’s energy security through access to reliable energy that is economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable. Hence, the Agency will continue to carry out research into all sources of energy including those presently used in Guyana. These efforts are aimed at securing and encouraging more efficient utilization of energy and sources of energy in the public’s interest. The Agency also seeks to develop and encourage the development and usage of sources of energy other than those currently in use.
The operation and benefits of the solar photovoltaic net-metering system can be viewed at http://egauge2733.egaug.es.