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Puerto Rico rooftops to ‘power up’ with $440M U.S investment

November 23rd, 2023 | Tags: Puerto Rico solar power solar Energy electricity
In a significant move towards renewable energy, the U.S. Department of Energy has announced a $440 million initiative to install solar panels on low-income homes in Puerto Rico. Photo: Internet Source

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — In a significant move towards renewable energy, the U.S. Department of Energy has announced a $440 million initiative to install solar panels on low-income homes in Puerto Rico. This effort comes as the U.S. territory faces persistent power outages and a deteriorating electric grid.

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, on her sixth visit to Puerto Rico this year, revealed that the project aims to benefit up to 40,000 homes, particularly in impoverished communities.

These are areas where power outages are frequent or where residents with disabilities, such as dialysis patients, rely heavily on electricity. The Department of Energy has selected a combination of nonprofits and solar companies to execute the project.

Of the total funds, $400 million is earmarked for three solar companies, while $40 million will go to five nonprofit organizations. The Department of Energy anticipates that the first solar panel installations will commence early next year.

The initiative is the latest in a series of efforts to reduce Puerto Rico's reliance on fossil fuels and improve its aging electric grid. The grid, which had been neglected for decades, suffered extensive damage from Hurricane Maria in 2017 and Hurricane Fiona last year, leading to island-wide blackouts. While emergency repairs were made, the reconstruction process only began earlier this year.

“I am impatient with the grid,” stated Granholm, highlighting the urgency of the situation. “Half of your generation facilities are not working.” She referred to the challenges in restoring and modernizing the electric grid.

In December 2022, the U.S. Congress approved $1 billion to aid in restoring Puerto Rico's grid. Additionally, a U.S. government task force has been formed to focus on enhancing the grid's resilience and efficient resource deployment. Earlier in the year, the U.S. government shipped three mega generators to the territory to provide emergency power amid ongoing outages.

Puerto Rico, which currently generates 97% of its electricity from petroleum, has set ambitious goals for renewable energy. The governor has pledged to obtain 40% of the island’s power from renewable resources by 2025, increasing to 60% by 2040.

9 Responses to “Puerto Rico rooftops to ‘power up’ with $440M U.S investment”

  • Innovation (23/11/2023, 19:12) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Tola follow suite
  • Santa clause (23/11/2023, 19:15) Like (1) Dislike (5) Reply
    No one to give us in the bvi nothing all uk give us is a coi and lock up our own
  • cnn (23/11/2023, 20:39) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    The bvi needs a new mother country so Either lead, follow or get out of the way!
  • Lb (23/11/2023, 20:55) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    So cool!!
  • Well look at that (23/11/2023, 23:18) Like (3) Dislike (2) Reply
  • please (24/11/2023, 09:01) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    This place is to damn rinkey dinky. Perhaps in the next 10-20 years. The world has evolve and is evolving every day and the BVI is slowly dragging behind struggling to keep up. Here we go in 2023 and almost in 2024 and still can’t get a proper water system and school system in place. They didn’t even have the common sense to build an above the ground cistern for the high school so the students can have access to water to wash their hands. Why is everything in the BVI is being built SUB PAR OR THE BAND AID SOLUTION MENTALITY. IS THIS ANOTHER NEW NORMAL THAT HAS BEEN ADDED TO THE LIST?
  • Sam (24/11/2023, 09:18) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    World class travelers (AKA political representatives), please follow suit. Less unnecessary traveling and more innovation and productivity is required of you.
  • Ughh! (24/11/2023, 10:16) Like (5) Dislike (1) Reply
    Why when we see something, we got to be like " let's do that too!"
    Why isn't it that, we see the problem and think on solutions with ," I have an idea"!

    Be innovators, my people!
  • WEW (24/11/2023, 12:32) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    Eat your heart out Slowande. Just think of how much you & your cronies could steal out of $400 million.

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