The emPOWERing Rural Electrification project (emPOWER project) aims to provide Renewable Energy solutions to assist Belize in achieving universal energy access. This project plans to install 335 kW of solar PV and battery storage in three selected villages in Belize. The project is estimated to cost 2.666 million US dollars (US$ 2,665,985).
The villages in question are of high importance as they fall in a precarious position of being on a major highway, having the transmission line traversing their land, and still do not have access to electricity. As part of the Sustainable Energy Action Plan (SEAP), which sets a goal of universal access to energy services by 2030, the GoB is interested in building smart solar PV, battery storage, diesel off-grid system and stand-alone solar PV systems (SAS) to remote communities to provide energy services and electricity. The MPSEPU has identified rural village electrification using the off-grid systems (mini- / microgrids) as an integral component of its long-term strategy, since an independent off-grid system is the least-cost feasible solution from both a financial and technical perspective.
Due to the high cost of connecting these villages to the grid, the Government of Belize (GoB) and Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) are developing innovative approaches, different technological solutions, and new business models in order to provide access to affordable, clean and sustainable energy to these villages. The project is part of coordinated trials and the GoB intends to use the lessons learned and best practices from the three five villages to electrify the remaining unserved.
- Status: Active
- Approval Date: October 2018
- Closing Date: June 2021
- Implementing Agency: Ministry of the Public Service, Energy and Public Utilities-ENERGY UNIT
- Funding Agency: Government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE)
- Total Project Cost: $6 million USD