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USAID project targets energy efficiency in Georgia

By Ernest Petrosyan
Monday, January 24
The new electro-mechanical laboratory which also exhibits energy efficient systems, was opened within the project NATELI [New Applied Technology and Lightning Initiative] at Georgian Technical University on January 21. The rehabilitation of the laboratory was funded by USAID and implemented by Winrock Georgia while the opening ceremony was attended by First Deputy Energy Minister Mariam Valishvili, GTU rector Archil Prangishvili, the head of USAID energy and environment office Jill Kelly, and the NATELI project Manager Inga Pkhaladze.

“Within the framework of NATELI project we conducted an energy audit in collaboration with Technical University and revealed some necessary measures, which would allow the university to save sums and energy. The NATELI project was conducted for this laboratory and based on our recommendations; GTU implemented the rehabilitation of the laboratory to function more perfectly which will help students to receive complete education and experience. These activities will allow GTU to consume up to 70% less energy resources and spend the saved money for other needs” stated the Chief of the party of the NATELI project Inga Pkhaladze.

“Since 2005, USAID has worked with Winrock and other organizations. In partnership with Georgian Technical University we supported trainings of 20 professors in energy efficiency, who became certified energy managers, and we continue to work with the ministry of education to recognize the certification in the field of energy efficiency. We also supported the development of a masters of Science program in energy consumption management. This includes providing handbooks and scholarships for 16 additional students. Through our program NATELI we have supported GTU to develop an energy audit manual and trainings on how such audits are conducted. Through these audits several apartments, hospitals and GTU have been able to increase their savings from energy wastes which can be used for other necessities”, stated the Director of the energy and environment office at USAID Jill Kelly

“Energy efficiency is the new topic, which in the energy field is at the nascent development stage. Such pilot projects can show clearly what results can be achieved. We are often told that our efforts dedicated to energy efficiency are not as appropriate as they are in most European countries. This is partially due to the shortage of existing financial resources in Georgia, however, I would like to note that jointly with USAID such projects are being implemented” stated the First Deputy energy Minister Mariam Valishvili.

The project NATELI promotes energy efficiency and renewable energy application in Georgia. Namely, the project’s goal is to convince Georgia’s large energy consumers such as hospitals, universities, condominium associations and others - to install energy efficient technologies, which will decrease energy consumption.