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BEL Upgrades Gas Turbine Capacity to Enhance Power Supply and Reliability

Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) has recently undertaken an initiative to strengthen system capacity and improve reliability. Collaborating with engineers and technicians from General Electric (USA), BEL’s Generation Team successfully upgraded the Gas Turbine at the West Lake facility, situated at Mile 8 on the George Price Highway. This upgrade significantly increases the turbine’s maximum output from 19 MW to an impressive 30 MW.

Increased generation capacity, greater backup capacity, and improved reliability have all been significant outcomes. The newly added 30 MW capacity allows BEL to contribute an additional 11 MW to the country's overall generation capacity. This injection of power strengthens the supply chain for homes, businesses, and industries.

Moreover, the revamped Gas Turbine now offers an additional 11.5% backup in-country generation capacity, providing a crucial buffer during unforeseen outages or maintenance downtime. This upgrade bolsters reliability and ensures smoother electricity services for customers, resulting in fewer disruptions to the national grid.

Furthermore, with the enhanced facility, BEL is now equipped to explore alternative and cost-effective fuel sources, enhancing both operational flexibility and benefitting customers in the process.

During the upgrade process, the Westlake Gas Turbine was temporarily unavailable. As a result, the total in-country generation capacity decreased to 85 MW. To mitigate this, BEL secured 55 MW from Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) in Mexico, resulting in a combined available generation capacity of 140 MW.

In light of these developments, BEL encourages its customers to implement energy conservation measures where possible. By avoiding excessive energy use during peak demand hours and hot weather conditions, customers can help maintain a stable and reliable electricity supply.

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