6 charging stations to be established as GEA pushes for “electric mobility road”

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

In creating an environment for increased usage of electric vehicles (EVs) in Guyana, the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA) is seeking to establish a new electric mobility road and six charging stations.

Chief Executive Officer of the Guyana Energy Agency, Dr Mahender Sharma shared that there are some 116 electric vehicles in operation in Guyana. Encouraging Guyanese to consider a transition from internal combustion vehicles, he has lauded the benefit of a cheaper operation with an EV.

While there are concerns with the range, causing persons to deliberate considerably on the feasibility, Dr Sharma contended that many persons do not exceed the acceptable radius on a daily basis. Nevertheless, six EV stations are in the pipeline to enable accessible charging.

“We’re partnering with GPL to do this. That will produce some comfort, reduce the range of anxiety. We’re yet to confirm with the groups as to the areas we intend to place it at. It’s an active conversation. Even without the EV stations, once you’re in a 50-to-60-mile radius, you’re just fine. Most of us rarely go out of that radius,” the GEA Head has outlined.

He added that an electric mobility road is the solution to concerns from consumers, but Guyanese should also consider the reduced tax duties attached to such vehicles.

CEO of GEA Mahender Sharma

“We want to develop an electric mobility road. We’re working with some of our development partners on that but Government has reduced the taxes. So, an electric vehicle that is more than four years, there are no duties and no taxes. If it’s [less] than four years, you only pay 14 per cent VAT. There is already an incentive for you to look at those.”

Unlike combustion vehicles, electric vehicles are propelled by electromagnetism and propelled by an electric motor. It is charged using electricity, eliminating oil changes and other features distinct to gasoline or diesel vehicles.

In the scope of renewables, businesses were previewed to the advantages of getting onboard with solar energy.

“The benefit of solar is that it is matured, proven technology. It is the virtual low-hanging fruit and I think it is very well suited to the business cycle. You start your business at 8am and close by about 5pm. That follows the sun-cycle almost perfectly. Solar is an important area,” the CEO noted.

Sharma pointed out that the GEA can conduct an investment-grade energy assessment free of cost. Businesses would have to reach out to the Agency, and engineers will be deployed to monitor consumption over a one-week period. Thereafter, recommendations will be made on the appropriate investment needed, payback costs, carbon dioxide savings and other data.

“The GEA can assist with that and it is something you can access right now. Solar presents this unique opportunity. Energy efficiency, I think, is the other virtual low-hanging fruit…Your consumption matches those sunshine hours and it is a great opportunity.”

He expounded that no duty is imposed on the importation of renewable equipment, such as solar panels, wind power generators and others used to generate electricity from renewable energy.

Last year, the GEA informed that Guyana has saved some $488 million in energy costs, with the installation of solar panels on Government buildings across the country over a span of seven years. Some 291 buildings sport the environmentally friendly and cost-effective power generation mechanism.