Govt gets UNDP support for renewable energy project in hinterland
July 26, 2003
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The Guyana government yesterday took a significant step towards implementing a renewable energy resources project for the hinterland when it completed the formalities with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
This project is entitled “Capacity Building and Demonstration Projects for Electrification of Hinterland Unserved Areas, Utilising Renewable Energy Resources”. The Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) will be responsible for the strategic monitoring and implementation of this programme.
The Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) said in a release yesterday that this falls within the second Country Cooperation Framework (CCF) for Guyana (2001-2003) which was formulated by the Guyana government and approved by the UNDP Executive Board in February 2002.
The provision of efficient, reliable and affordable energy is necessary for economic development and poverty alleviation strategies pursued by government, the release stated. In places where access is difficult, and as the system of carbon credit evolves and develops, renewable energy sources can become competitive compared with fossil fuel sources, the release further said.
This project will focus on three primary areas - increasing knowledge and skills development in many aspects of policy and planning on renewable energy; identifying and learning about alternative funding mechanisms and opportunities for clean energy development and how to source same; and providing technical assistance, institutional strengthening and capacity building in a practical way through the implementation of three or more hinterland demonstration projects.
The project is intended to play a supportive and catalytic role and complement the ongoing projects and activities of various donors, the private sector and the government. Focus will be on partnerships, networking, collaborating, national ownership, and community participation.
In addition, the OPM release noted, the project would not only allow Guyana to explore new financing alternatives under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), but also to make use of opportunities presented by new technologies and to seek guidance from international policy frameworks. The CDM is catered for under the Kyoto climate treaty and makes available financing for energy projects which adhere to the objectives of the treaty to cut the emission of so-called greenhouse gases.
The project will also promote linkages to sustainable livelihoods and other development activities such as micro-enterprise development which is currently supported by the UNDP through the EMPRETEC project. By promoting development in hinterland locations, the project is expected to facilitate the expansion and creation of economic opportunities for residents and the diversification of the communities.
The release also stated that training would be provided to representatives in the communities where the demonstration projects are installed to ensure that the systems are effectively managed and maintained at the community level. There would be a linkage with a regional training programme organized by the UNDP for the training of sector agency personnel on the CDM, the release added.