Harnessing Hydro Power to Empower the Birch Grove Community
Harnessing Hydro Power to Empower the Birch Grove Community
This proposed project involves the implementation of a 30kW community micro hydropower plant and training to improve the capacity of members in the Birch Gopve community to operate and maintain the plant and to implements other and similar projects.
The project aligns perfectly with Immediate Objective 3 of the SGP OP5 as stated in the Country Program Strategy of Grenada – “Promote the demonstration, development and transfer of low carbon technology at the community level.” Hydroelectric power (aka hydropower) is one of the most significant and mature renewable energy technologies (RET) in existence globally. Like all RETs, it contributes to the reduction of Greenhouse gasses (GHG) in the atmosphere by avoiding the use of fossil fuels for electricity generation. Nearly all of the of the electricity consumption in Grenada is still being generated from imported fossil fuels (98.5% in October 2016).
There have been no hydropower developments here in Grenada, partly due to the high capital cost associated with them and limited availability of expertise in the field. Grant funding for this project will enable these hurdles to be overcome.
Expected Outcome
The proposed hydropower plant is designed to produced an average of 180,000+ kWh of clean electricity per annum – that’s enough to supply 100 average Grenadian homes. This will:
? result in a reduction in CO2 emission of 126 Tons per annum
? avoid the importation of 11,000+ US gallons of diesel annually
? generate approximately EC$5,500 per month in revenue from electricity sales to the national electric utility (Grenlec)
Success Strategy and Activities
Hydropower power generation results in greater yield per unit capacity than other renewable options available here in Grenada (viz solar and wind). This is because the resource is more consistently available throughout the day and year. This consistency of supply also make hydropower more suitable for generating energy for backup supply which can be a great asset in time of grid outages such as in the aftermath of a hurricane.
The “Run-of-the-river” type design of the proposed system avoids the creation of a large dam and associated environmental and social impacts. The design was also developed to be compatible with the relatively low flow rates available year-round in Grenada’s rivers.
The design consists of three components – a small powerhouse built to safely accommodate the hydropower generator/turbine and its associated electrical equipment (switchgear); a concrete structure called a weir built within the river to create a small pond from which some of the river’s water is diverted to the powerhouse; and a high-pressure pipe called a penstock for taking the water from the weir to the turbine in the powerhouse.
To ensure successful implementation of the project, a carefully constituted project management committee will be setup to manage the project. The committee will be comprised of members with experience in project management and will include a consultant who is a technical expert in the field and persons familiar with civil construction projects
The total budget for the project is US$98,781.48. Financing is expected to come mostly from the GEF SGP facility (US$97,014.81) with small in-kind contributions from the BCDC (US$1,222.22) and the project consultant (US$544.44)
Using the expected revenue from the sale of the electricity generated and ignoring the operations and maintenance cost, the payback period is calculated to be 48 months
Project Beneficiaries
The benefits of the proposed project are far reaching. The resulting reduction in the CO2 emission from electricity generation contributes to climate change mitigation globally. The reduction in the importation of fossil fuel contributes to national energy security and an associated improvement in the trade imbalance for Grenada. At the committee level, the project represents a steady source of income to assist the BCDC to ensure that the plant can be operated and maintained properly as well as to support the advancement of the group’s important agenda
The training and development components of this project will also enhance the capacity of the BCDC to undertake other project and better execute their plans. Other residents of the community will also be enlightened with knowledge of the hydropower technology and operations leading to employment for a few and better employability and inspiration for all.
The lessons learnt from this project and the results obtained will be shared nationally and the project will serve a local demonstration of the effectiveness of the technology.
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Project Snapshot

Rotary Club Grenada East
Area Of Work:
Climate Change Mitigation
Grant Amount:
US$ 101,823.60
Co-Financing Cash:
Co-Financing in-Kind:
US$ 17,777.77
Project Number:
Satisfactorily Completed

SGP Country office contact

Ms. Kadijah Paula Edwards
Ms Akarda Ventour


P.O. Box 3486
St. George's