GPL to continue meter replacement as defective terminal meters contributing to revenue loss

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

The Guyana Power and Light (GPL) will be installing an additional 70,000 Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) meters this year to replace the old terminal meters.

In 2023, almost 100,000 terminal meters were placed with AMI devices, and of that number, approximately 700 terminal devices were defective. This is according to GPL’s Divisional Director of Loss Reduction, Parsram Persaud, who made this disclosure while speaking at a Public Utilities Commission (PUC) meeting that was reviewing GPL’s 2023 Operating Standards and Performance Targets on Thursday.

While GPL recorded a loss reduction of 25.5 per cent in 2023, Persaud revealed that the agency recovered millions in losses by replacing defective meters. He said the programme ensures that citizens have reliable access to electricity, and addresses GPL’s loss reduction challenges.

“As presented earlier, we are actually visiting each of these locations. We started last year replacing and checking the integrity of installations and replacing the meters, and that is expected to complete mid-this year the entire tariff C and D customers,” Persaud said.

AMI meters use distribution boxes and insulated wires to minimise instances of illegal connections that cause disruptions to the power distribution network.

GPL’s Executive and Management Committee member Kesh Nandlall has said this also allows the meter to reflect more accurate readings.

“Those ones (AMI meters) the meter readers go around, they have an instrument that automatically picks up the reading. We have about 70,000 prepaid, where we don’t need to read those meters,” Nandlall said.

Since the commencement of the AMI meter replacement programme, some 97,480 meters have been replaced at households and commercial businesses across the country. These smart meters, which were designed by a reputable company in the United States of America, also facilitate customers to submit their meter readings to GPL via WhatsApp and the Customer Web portal.

The upgrade is being funded by a grant from the European Union and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), and works are executed by China National Machinery Import and Export Corporation /China Synergy Electric Engineering Company (CMC/CSEEC) and Ramoutar and Sons Contracting Services