A $5 million loan has been awarded to Guyana by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to help increase the efficiency of the country’s power system through loss reduction measures and improvements in the operation and maintenance of the distribution network.
Guyana’s main state owned utility, Guyana Power and Light Ltd. (GPL), will be undertaking the project and follows an earlier loss reduction initiative, also supported by an IDB loan.
It will rehabilitate a portion of the distribution network and continue a series of commercial loss reduction actions, including replacing broken meters and meter upgrades, while financing capacity building and energy conservation activities. At the end of the program’s 4-year implementation period, both the number and duration of power cuts are expected to decline by up to 40 percent, while the ratio between electricity supplied and electricity paid for by customers is expected to rise from the current 67 percent to 73 percent.
The project should help to improve the quality of service provided by GPL and strengthen its technical capabilities. It will also promote the efficient use of energy and the culture of payment, in a system where nearly one-third of the electricity generated in 2010 was lost for either commercial or technical reasons.
Actions implemented by GPL in the last four years include the installation of 2,200 Itron meters, replacement of 12,253 defective meters, installation of 1,300 prepaid meters, identification and removal of more than 32,000 illegal connections, and approximately 6,000 metering testing.
GPL expects more than half of its technical losses are attributable to deficiencies in the country’s 4,000 km low voltage network, 75 percent of which is in need of upgrading.