GINA, GUYANA, Tuesday, August 30, 2016
Consumers are being urged to make smart choices in energy consumption since it can save them money. Businesses can improve productivity and their cash flow if they employ energy efficient systems, Minister of Public Infrastructure, David Patterson advised.
The Minister, while addressing participants at the National Workshop on Energy Efficiency today, at the Pegasus hotel, explained that energy efficiency will reduce the need for investment in energy infrastructure, cut energy bills, improve health and consumer welfare, and increase competitiveness.
The government is committed to the promotion of energy efficiency, energy conservation and the development and utilisation of alternate sources of energy. As such, under the second phase of the Latin American and Caribbean Energy efficiency programme, the government will aim to achieve sustainable energy savings, prioritise investment needs in energy sectors and improve the country’s finance and reduce carbon dioxide emissions, Minister Patterson pointed out.
However, for this to be a success, the nation needs to consolidate and organise activities to be undertaken by several institutions. A minor change in behaviour is also vital to improve energy efficiency. In turn, these efforts will lead to the formation of national plans and long-term strategic actions, Minister Patterson explained.
While Guyana is in the process of reviving its national energy policy, the efforts in sustainable development are in accordance with the framework that promotes the objective of providing a stable, reliable and economic supply of energy.
Lower levels of energy consumption will also assist in the reduction of the importation of fossils fuels and lead to environmental benefits through the reduction of greenhouse gases and air pollution, the Minister pointed out.
CEO, Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) Mahender Sharma highlighted that using light-emitting diode (LED) lights is economical. Sharma said that energy efficient lights are 60-80 percent more efficient; lifespan is much longer and are available in a variety of sizes and colours.
Further, Sharma explained that energy efficient air conditioning systems are 50 percent more efficient, start-up quicker, are faster, quieter, reduce voltage and most importantly, are economical.
The GEA, CEO encouraged the participants to budget, procure, and install indoor and outdoor LED lights, install energy efficient air conditioners, and equipment to reduce energy costs. “We encourage you to buy equipment that are energy efficient, we often look at buying cheaper but cheaper is not always best because we need to look at operation cost and the Energy Star brand is recommended, they use 30% less energy,” Sharma said.
GEA, Sharma said, will assist by providing technical advice and support, and conducting energy assessment.
Recently GEA carried out exercises including the installation of LED solar power lights, the distribution of energy efficient stoves, the replacement of inefficient street lighting, and ongoing public awareness and education programmes such as seminars and presentations.
Additionally, legislation has been amended to remove Value Added Tax (VAT) on imported compact LED lamps, to motivate energy efficient behaviours.
The participants of the two-day workshop hosted by GEA were encouraged to join the government and energy agency in their pursuit of creating a green economy which is highly dependent on energy efficiency.