Energy profile: Guyana
Fuel mix (fossil fuels vs renewables)
Roughly 90% of Guyana's total energy supply comes from petroleum, with the remaining 10% derived from wood, sugar cane residue, and other renewables. Fossil fuels accounted for 85% of installed capacity and 96% of electrical generation in 2019, complemented by small contributions from biofuels, wind, and solar energy. Guyana's officially stated goal is to double its energy efficiency by 2030 and to approach 100% renewable energy generation by 2040, though development of the country's recently discovered fossil fuel resources could interfere with these targets.
Greenhouse gas emissions targets
Until recently, mining and logging have accounted for most of Guyana's greenhouse gas emissions. The majority of Guyana's 2.39 million tons of CO2 emissions (3.05 tons per capita) in 2019 were associated with forestry and changes in land use. Guyana's emerging status as a major oil and gas producer is expected to substantially increase the country's greenhouse gas emissions. Guyana's Nationally Determined Contribution plan sets no specific emissions reduction target, but calls for mitigation measures such as land conservation, reduced impact logging and increased emphasis on renewable energy.
Government energy agencies & other key players
National energy ministry
Permitting and regulatory agencies
MNR (the Ministry of Natural Resources) oversees the GGMC (Guyana Geology and Mines Commission), GFC (Guyana Forestry Commission), Guyana Gold Board, and the planned PCG (Petroleum Commission of Guyana). The MNR is responsible for the development, implementation, and oversight of policies in Guyana regarding the exploration, development, utilization, and conservation of natural resources.
National oil company
Leading energy companies
Guyana produced 1135 GWh of electricity in 2019. As of 2021, GPL accounts for 100% of production. The company has received criticism due to the lack of reliable electricity, high cost, and outdated transmission and distribution lines. The Guyanese government took steps starting in 2020 to lower the cost of electricity primarily through energy diversification efforts.
In 2018, electricity demand was 124.9 MW. As of 2020, 89.7% of the urban population and 80.3% of the rural population had access to electricity. Programs are in place to promote access of rural populations to mostly renewables-based small scale grids.
Coal in Guyana
Guyana does not produce, consume, or import coal. 
Oil & Natural Gas in Guyana
The Guyanese government maintains control over offshore oil development and production. Guyana has been a country of interest since the discovery of the Liza I oil field in 2015, which has led to extensive exploration investments and further discoveries in offshore blocks such as Stabroek and Kaieteur. Guyana needs to close the gaps in technical and administrative capacity required for successful management and regulation of the oil industry.
Imports & source countries
Refined petroleum was Guyana's largest import (26.4%) during June 2020 and crude petroleum was its largest export (43.3%).
Proposed new sources & projects
Guyana intends to amp up its use of domestically produced natural gas to reduce costs and displace fuel oil power plants. In 2021, the Guyanese government announced a partnership with ExxonMobil to bring more natural gas to the country via the proposed Liza Gas Pipeline and a new natural gas-to-shore facility on the site of the abandoned Wales Estate Sugar Processing Plant.
Renewable Energy in Guyana
Guyana's government has identified wind, solar, biomass, and hydroelectricity as four key elements in its proposal to generate 100% of the country's electricity from renewable sources. The country has potential for both small- and large-scale hydropower, including the proposed 165 MW Amaila Falls project. Tax concessions and capital write offs are in place for wind and solar investments. Guyana experiences an average of 12 hours of sunlight throughout the year, making it ideal for solar development.
Small island and coastal low-lying developing states such as Guyana are especially vulnerable to the catastrophic weather events associated with climate change. While many have touted the environmental benefits of reduced CO2 emissions associated with the government's planned transition from heavy oil to domestically produced natural gas, increased methane emissions from natural gas development may pose an offsetting risk of adverse climate impacts.
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