Guyana’s development has been curtailed for decades, in part due to the exorbitant cost of electricity which is among the highest in the region. Now, the new oil producing country is looking to utilize associated natural gas being produced offshore to cut this cost at least by half and open up new development opportunities for its population of just over 750,000 people.
Schreiner Parker, Rystad Energy’s Vice President for Latin America and the Caribbean told OilNOW in a recent interview that the planned gas-to-energy project is a step towards modernization and will help Guyana to become more energy secure.
“I think it’s absolutely a step in the right direction and a step towards modernization a bit,” Parker said.
The gas-to-energy project is expected to last for at least 25 years and is generally anticipated to have a positive effect on the economy of Guyana as a result of more affordable and reliable electricity, as well as increased local employment and procurement opportunities. The highly anticipated project is expected to pave the way for a massive industrial park which is expected to occupy just over 10,000 acres of land.
Concerns have been raised by some in Guyana that pursuing such a project runs counter to the country’s low carbon development objectives and that plans should be made instead to develop renewable energy alternatives.
But Parker said gas should be seen as a transition fuel that would help Guyana to become more energy independent as the country moves to develop renewable energy sources.
“Gas is going to be the flex fuel of the energy transition and I think being able to be connected to gas to power is helping…energy security; it’s helps security of supply meaning you’re not needing to go out and buy diesel and heavy oils when there’s a deficit and I think it will allow for a lot of industrial growth to happen in the region,” he pointed out.
For its part, the government said it is pursuing a broad energy mix that would include a combination of gas, hydro and solar power. It is also considering adding wind to this mix.