– “Government remains inflexibly committed to renewable energy”
Cabinet Secretary, Dr. Roger Luncheon recently disclosed that the US$80M needed to fund the Amaila Falls Hydro Project has been identified and made available.
Dr. Luncheon told media operatives that while Guyana stands poised to receive the remaining payments from the Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) agreement it has with the Kingdom of Norway, it has already benefitted from US$150M and the remaining sum is expected to be received during the fifth and sixth payment cycles.
The Cabinet Secretary also stated that the recent visit by a Norwegian delegation to Guyana also served to cement plans to start the process that the administration has undertaken to keep alive the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project.
He said that work is being done with the Norwegians and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to facilitate the US$80M for the construction of the hydro power facility.
“The administration’s thoughts are indeed optimistic about the future,” the Cabinet Secretary added.
The Head of the Presidential Secretariat said that he would be very careful in considering any assumption that the road project is on hold as he does not believe that President Donald Ramotar would readily accept that choice of terminology. Nonetheless, Dr. Luncheon said that one must admit that there have been some reversals at the levels of parliament with regard to specific elements of that project, but by no means has the government ever surrendered its intentions to have renewable energy and to erect the Amaila Falls Hydro Power facility.
He said that work continued notwithstanding those “road blocks” that the parliamentary opposition placed in the way of the smooth movement forward in realizing the administration’s intentions.
“I recall saying that we have never given up on Amaila falls Hydro power facility and indeed that …US$80M is now being transferred by the Norwegians to the Inter-American Development Bank which has remained an important player among the stakeholders involved in furthering the ambitions and the intentions of this administration on renewable energy .The money has been identified and made available and now being worked on with the Bank for it to be transferred to support that construction,” Dr. Luncheon explained.
As for the road project, Luncheon said that the Minister of Public Works indicated that that activity is virtually over. “It is essentially completed.”
He however suggested that the details in that regard be solicited from the Public Works Minister.
With regard to how the government will take a different approach this time around in securing support for the project, Dr. Luncheon said that he does not want to talk about its secrets or rather, “bandy it around.”
He believes that there are elements of the process that have not been concretized and as such, he felt that it would be unwise to comment on how support would be gathered. He added, “I think we could safely concede that there is lots of mischief afoot and I would prefer not to say much, other than to repeat that this government remains inflexibly committed to renewable energy, and renewable energy in the form of the hydro power facility at the Amaila falls.”
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