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100% renewable energy by 2025 unlikely – Climate Change Head

first_img…says there is scope to revise targetOfficials are admitting that developments since Guyana embarked on the path of ‘greening the economy’ may make a revision of its 100 per cent renewable energy target by the year 2025 necessary.This came out of a meeting between the Office of Climate Change (OCC); Guyana Energy Agency (GEA); Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC) and the Parliamentary Sectoral Committee on Foreign Affairs. It will be a different view to that usually expressed by the politicians.Committee Chairperson Gail Teixeira noted that Guyana’s commitment of 100 per cent renewable energy by 2025 was a huge commitment even with the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project (AFHP) then on the cards, much less now considering that Government was no longer pushing the project but smaller hydropower facilities.While the Committee heard a number of initiatives aimed at reducing emissionsOCC Head Janelle Christianand switching to the green state, like outfitting Government departments and setting up small hydropower stations, Teixeira demanded to know what specific targets have been met and the impact these targets had on the overall goal.“I believe, given the extent of research done over the last three years, it is clear that we cannot reach to the goal of 100 per cent by 2025,” OCC Head Janelle Christian, who has a master’s degree in Natural Resource Management, told the Committee. In response to this admission, Teixeira urged her to inform the requisite policy-makers.“You should advise the advisers and politicians, because in Parliament, it is said (that the target is achievable). It’s only because we are asking you to come before us, we are hearing there is a consideration for a review,” she observed.When asked by Committee member Nigel Dharamlall whether there was an exit strategy for the agreement in light of this information, Christian ruled out an exit. According to the environment specialist, there is room for revision of targets.Renewable energyIt was only recently that Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson provided updates on a number of multimillion-dollar hydro and solar power projects that had seemingly been gathering dust…Patterson also spoke of a US$3.8 million solar farm, funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), which would be constructed at Bartica. According to the Minister, this will be completed by the end of 2018.Meanwhile, the update on the Tumatumari hydro project is that the privateMembers of the Committee on Fridaydeveloper has been given a deadline to reach financial closure with investors; that is, when all agreements have been signed and conditions met, in order to allow the dispensing of funds.Patterson noted that if the developer, in this case Tumatumari Hydro Inc, proved unable to meet the July month-end deadline set by the State for financial closure, Government would take over the project.The update on the Kato hydropower project is a more positive one. According to Patterson, funding has been secured for the US$2 million project and work will commence when the weather permits.He also spoke of securing funding from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) for solar – photovoltaic (PV) – farms at Port Kaituma (US$1.8 million); Kwakwani (US$2.6 million) and Matthews Ridge (US$2 million).Renewable energy targetsPatterson had also provided a breakdown of all the solar systems they have managed to install on Government buildings. He referenced President David Granger’s visit to India to attend the International Solar Alliance (ISA) Founding Conference and Solar Summit in March.He said now that Guyana was a member of this alliance, a line of credit of approximately US$15 million would be available to Guyana. While the funds have not been allocated as yet, Patterson noted that the idea was to provide funding towards utility-scale energy for Indigenous villages to the tune of four megawatts.He revealed that the Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Ministry and the Communities Ministry would identify these villages. All of this, according to Patterson, culminates in certain targets the Government is trying to meet in renewable energy installation.“So, by the end of 2018, we would have installed about five megawatts of renewable energy. And that’s a commendable feat coming from 2015, with zero,” Patterson boasted. “And then, by the end of 2020, when all these projects would have been completed, there would be 29 or 30 megawatts.”“So, we’re well on our way to achieving our target of trying to become as 100 per cent renewable energy (powered) as close as possible. So, we have made progress and we’re just about four or five per cent (completed) at the end of 2018 and we’ll triple that by the end of 2020,” Patterson had said.last_img read more