Speedy deployment of the 5.2 GW deliberate photo voltaic and storage in Puerto Rico, a chance raised in a report by six nationwide laboratories, would require an enchancment in Puerto Rico’s utility practices. An ordered procurement course of suffers from delays at a number of steps.
From pv journal USA
Six US nationwide laboratories describe in a report how Puerto Rico can attain 40% renewable electrical energy by 2025, as mandated by Puerto Rico’s Power Public Coverage Act, referred to as Act 17).
The U.S. territory might attain 36% renewables by 2025 if 3.75 GW of utility-scale photo voltaic and 1.5 GW of storage are constructed and related, matching a purchase order mandate mandated for native utilities PREPA. This might occur by the top of 2025, which might be “a really speedy deployment,” the nationwide laboratories mentioned in a report.
To succeed in 40% would require extra “a whole bunch of megawatts” of renewable technology, the report says, noting that the capability issue of 20% is for the preliminary 3.75 GW of photo voltaic.
To date, delays in a number of phases have slowed down the six tranches of the deliberate buy of renewables that the Puerto Rico Power Bureau ordered PREPA to do in an order in August 2020.
Whereas the Power Bureau order guided PREPA to problem requests for proposals for the primary 5 procurements by the top of the yr 2022, solely two RFPs have been issued up to now.
Within the first procurement, PREPA required all bidders to submit a “greatest and last supply” not as soon as, however 4 occasions, mentioned PJ Wilson, president of the Photo voltaic and Power Storage Affiliation of Puerto Rico. Then PREPA informed bidders they needed to bid a hard and fast value of about 10.5 cents/kWh, Wilson mentioned, including “the entire course of was uncommon, drawn out, unclear, and painful.” The Power Bureau has employed consulting agency Accion Group to supervise the second procurement, “and sure” future procurements, Wilson mentioned.
One other hurdle is that photo voltaic and storage initiatives accepted by PREPA should even be accepted by the Monetary Oversight and Administration Board (FOMB), a physique created by a 2016 US regulation.
After photo voltaic initiatives within the first buy get all the required approvals, there’s a last step referred to as the “cut-off date.” Wilson mentioned his understanding was that the deadlines had been scheduled individually for all of the initiatives and had been unfold out over a number of months, and that “till the ultimate closing contracts are signed, there should still be the builders again out.”
Consequently, the primary buy has not but resulted in any signed contracts with the builders of the 845 MW photo voltaic initiatives, Wilson mentioned. Two vitality storage initiatives for buy, with a complete of 220 MW/880 MWh, are awaiting approval from the FOMB, he added.
For the second procurement, though no data on bids has been posted on-line, Wilson mentioned “informally we’ve got heard” that greater than 40 bids totaling 1,800 MW of initiatives have been submitted.
As for the third buy, for which the Power Bureau has guided PREPA to problem an RFP in December 2021, Accion Group has not but introduced when the RFP will likely be issued, Wilson mentioned.
Though Puerto Rico’s Act 17 mandates that PREPA attain 20% renewables by 2022, renewables present 3% of technology by 2022, mentioned Marisol Bonnet, group lead for the US Division of Power’s Puerto Rico Power Restoration Crew. of Power, throughout a webinar describing the report of six nationwide laboratories.
Further key findings
Accelerated near-term deployment of utility-scale photo voltaic, land-based wind, and storage will cut back system funding and working prices, the report says, and by 2025 these sources will likely be scarcer. than the price of working fossil-fueled turbines. That evaluation doesn’t but take note of incentives below the US Inflation Discount Act, which the examine group will embody because it prepares a last examine this yr.
The speedy deployment of fossil-fired and renewable technology might result in “important stranded property,” the report warned, if distributed technology resembling rooftop photo voltaic and storage ultimately dominate Puerto’s vitality provide. Rico.
Puerto Rico can improve vitality reliability and resilience to hurricanes, the report advises, with two rooftop photo voltaic plus storage, and digital energy vegetation that mixture storage.
Requested within the webinar how the Federal Emergency Administration Company’s work is addressing technology shortfalls in Puerto Rico whereas transitioning to renewable sources, FEMA Administrator Deanne Criswell mentioned “any technology work added to the FEMA on the system is short-term, to permit for emergency repairs to be made on the present system.” A nonprofit group has filed a lawsuit in opposition to FEMA below the Freedom of Data Act to reveal its funding for renewable versus fossil technology.
Wilson, whose group in Puerto Rico is a participant within the “PR100” initiative that produced the report, mentioned that the initiative is a “house for all stakeholders to hitch minds to study technical path” for the island to achieve 100% renewable electrical energy by 2050—the ultimate mandate of Puerto Rico’s Act 17. The PR100 course of, he mentioned, “additionally encourages federal funding to align with Puerto Rico vitality coverage, native resilience wants and business greatest practices.”
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