Georgetown, March 2017: The Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) in collaboration with the Ministry of Education (MoE) and the Ministry of Indigenous People Affairs (MoIP) has commenced the installation of nine (9) grid-connected solar photovoltaic (PV) systems at Public Institutions (mainly secondary schools) across the country which will produce an estimated 124,321 kWh of energy annually.

The installations, expected to be completed by the end of April 2017, were initiated as a direct response to His Excellency, President David Granger’s, vision to have the Government of Guyana lead the way in transitioning towards greater renewable energy use by having every government building, school etc. convert to utilising alternative sources of energy over the next five years. Mr. Leon DeSouza, the lead Engineer on the project indicated that “…the Institutions were chosen from among those that GEA would have conducted Energy Assessments at and based on the size of the systems they would require.” He went on to explain that “GEA was responsible for procuring and installation oversight of the PV systems.”

The components of the installed systems are PV modules, inverters and protection devices. The PV modules and grid connected inverters, which are the main components, have a lifespan of twenty-five (25) years and ten (10) years respectively. The following are a list of the Institutions and the size of each system:

At a total cost of GY $ 48,959,883, the project will aid in the avoidance of 87,025 kg of carbon dioxide emissions and will result in savings of approximately GD $$8,336,330 annually with a simple payback period of about 5.8 years.

Photovoltaic (PV) technology harnesses the sun’s energy by converting it into electricity. With the abundance of sunlight in Guyana, and the region at large, solar PV Systems are a very attractive alternative to fossil fuel generated electricity as, PV panels provide clean – green energy, which is also environmentally friendly, owing to the fact that during electricity generation (with PV panels) there is no harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

As part of the realisation of the vision to provide reliable energy in an environmentally, socially and sustainable framework, GEA intends to conduct similar exercises at other Public Institutions in Guyana. The Agency will also continue to provide technical support, monitoring and training in the use and operation of the systems.