Puerto Rico's Utility PREPA Plans to Divide Island Into Renewable Energy Microgrids

By Microgrid Resources Coalition posted 02-13-2019 10:56


James Ellsmoor, Forbes


After the catastrophe caused by 2017’s Hurricane Maria, many Puerto Ricans were left without electricity for months. Now, the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) has put forward a plan to radically reform electricity access on the Caribbean island .

The latest draft of the integrated resource plan (IRP) has been greeted with mixed reactions by environmentalists and clean energy advocates. Like many Caribbean islands, Puerto Rico has long depended on electricity generated from imported fossil fuels. The new plan has a heavy emphasis on utility-owned solar energy with battery storage but also involves constructing three new terminals for the importation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to be burned to generate electricity.

The Sierra Club de Puerto Rico has celebrated the movement towards renewable energy, although the organization remains vociferously against the planned privatization of PREPA. The NGO's Environmental Justice Organizer, Adriana Gonzales, is blunt about the problems facing Puerto Rico.

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