Puerto Rico

IEEFA Research

IEEFA report: Retail choice will not bring down Puerto Rico’s high electricity rates

Precedent from U.S. states shows retail choice increases costs to consumers; Opens door to predatory marketing

A research brief released today by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) lays out a cautionary tale to policy-makers in Puerto Rico, as they consider adopting a program known as retail choice in the island’s electricity market. Retail choice is a policy that allows individual customers to select who will supply their […]

August 23, 2018 Read More →
IEEFA report: Effects of long-running oil-purchase scandal undermine privatization and contract-reform initiatives at PREPA

IEEFA report: Effects of long-running oil-purchase scandal undermine privatization and contract-reform initiatives at PREPA

A scheme that contributed to utility’s ruin and a pattern of whistleblower suppression; Potential new grounds for bondholder claims in bankruptcy proceeding; ‘History is repeating itself in Puerto Rico’

July 18, 2018, SAN JUAN (IEEFA) — A long-running practice in which Puerto Rico’s public utility bought low-quality oil at high-quality prices has been mostly ignored in Gov. Ricardo Rosselló’s privatization of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA). A report published today by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) — “Multibillion-Dollar Oil […]

IEEFA Puerto Rico: PREPA’s Approved Budget Faces Five Years of Shortfalls

Report Puts Average Annual Budget Deficits at $1 Billion; Privatization Will Compound Risks; Hurdles Include Debt Burden and Costly Dependence on Imported Gas and Oil for Electricity Generation

May 25, 1018 (IEEFA) — A budget review published today by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis of the approved fiscal-recovery blueprint for the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) concludes that the plan faces billions in financial risks that will hinder the transformation of the grid. The plan, certified in April by […]

IEEFA Report: Privatizing Puerto Rico’s Electric Company Would Be an Impediment to Modernization  

Plan Would Hurt Ratepayers and Undermine a U.S. Commonwealth’s Entire Economy

Link to Spanish-language press release April 13, 2018 (IEEFA)— The Legislative Assembly of Puerto Rico would be acting in the public’s best interest by blocking a proposed privatization of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, a new report by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis concludes. The report — “Privatization Bill Will Not […]

April 13, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA Report: Puerto Rico Can Get 40% of Its Electricity From Renewables by 2028

Transition Will Require Modernization of Generation, Transmission, and Distribution as Well as Strong Regulatory Oversight

March 1, 2018 (IEEFA) — The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis published a report today describing how Puerto Rico can get 40 percent of its electricity from renewable resources by 2028. The report, published with the Puerto Rico Institute of Competitiveness and Sustainable Economy (ICSE-PR), sees the U.S. commonwealth relying on renewables for 50 percent […]

IEEFA Update: Puerto Rico Is at an Urgent Energy-Policy Crossroads Now

Progress Requires Debt Elimination, Greater Reliance on Microgrids and Renewable Energy, Appointment of an Independent PREPA Administrator

OCT. 24, 2017 (IEEFA) — The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) today posted a webinar and data presentation calling for responsible electricity-grid modernization in Puerto Rico and emphasizing the importance of establishing appropriate policy now. The presentation, (download the slide show here) by IEEFA energy consultants Cathy Kunkel and Anna Sommers, follows […]

October 24, 2017 Read More →

IEEFA Puerto Rico: The Aguirre Offshore Gas Port Is Unbankable

PREPA Has No Viable Plan to Finance a $380 Million Project, Leaving Ratepayers to Absorb the Costs

At the heart of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s flawed plan to upgrade the island’s crumbling electricity system lies a proposed $380 million facility to bring imported liquefied natural gas into the commonwealth. PREPA, as the authority is known, has been promoting the project for years, even though it would mean a perpetuation of […]

IEEFA Puerto Rico: The PREPA Restructuring Plan Before Congress Is Not Realistic and Does Not Hold All Players Accountable

IEEFA Puerto Rico: The PREPA Restructuring Plan Before Congress Is Not Realistic and Does Not Hold All Players Accountable

Bondholders and Dealmakers Are Not Stepping Up; Citizen Ratepayers and Taxpayers Are Left Holding the Bag Under Proposal Before Congress

Puerto Rico’s electricity-system imbroglio is in the public eye today in Washington, where a house subcommittee is holding a public hearing on a plan to restructure the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s staggering $9.5 billion debt. We’ve written a letter to the subcommittee chairman, Rep. Doug LaMalfa, detailing how the debt restructuring plan sells Puerto Rico […]

March 22, 2017 Read More →

IEEFA Puerto Rico: How to Play Hardball With Bondholders

Lessons for PREPA on Placing Customers (and the Economy) Ahead of Creditors

How much of its more than $8 billion in debt can the essentially bankrupt Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority pay back? A federal oversight board appointed four months ago to supervise debt restructuring for the entire Puerto Rican government offered up an indication last week. The board, empaneled in October under the auspices of the […]

January 24, 2017 Read More →

IEEFA Report: Debt Restructuring Deal for Puerto Rico Power Authority Will Not Restore Agency to Financial Health

Flaws Will Result in High Electricity Rates, Burden an Already Ailing Economy, and Prevent the Development of Renewables

CLEVELAND, Aug. 4, 2016 (IEEFA.org) — The Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis published a report today warning of serious flaws in a debt restructuring deal for the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA). The analysis, by IEEFA’s director of finance, Tom Sanzillo, and Cathy Kunkel, an IEEFA energy analyst, concludes that the restructuring […]

August 4, 2016 Read More →

More News and Commentary

Battle brews over short-term energy investment plans in Puerto Rico

Greentech Media: The number of jurisdictions pursuing a goal of 100 percent renewables keeps growing. Puerto Rico looks to be next, with a late November plan from the island’s governor and a proposal before the legislature both calling for 100 percent renewables by 2050. In October, a diverse group of clean energy advocates also published […]

December 7, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA Puerto Rico: Backroom natural gas deals threaten to displace public renewable energy plans

What’s real: legislative initiatives or private contracting?

Can Puerto Rico’s recent legislative progress on renewable energy withstand an onslaught of special interests supporting economically unsupportable, fiscally damaging and environmentally destructive natural gas proposals? A fragile consensus has emerged from the recent Puerto Rico legislative session and a parallel energy planning process being carried out by the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA), […]

December 3, 2018 Read More →
IEEFA Puerto Rico:  Massive liquefied natural gas project dead

IEEFA Puerto Rico: Massive liquefied natural gas project dead

Finally, some good news for electricity ratepayers in Puerto Rico

A massive liquefied natural gas (LNG) project in Puerto Rico that would have diverted funds from badly needed development of solar power and would have kept electric power costs high has been officially cancelled. Last week, Excelerate Energy, the company that planned to develop a natural gas import terminal in Puerto Rico, requested that the […]

November 30, 2018 Read More →

A shift in Puerto Rico to natural gas would hinder renewable-energy potential

PV Magazine: The Puerto Rico utility’s favored generation plan, in a report prepared by Siemens, involves an LNG terminal at San Juan and would achieve only 55% renewables by 2038. A scenario without LNG would reach 79% renewables by 2038 at comparable cost, based on undisclosed cost assumptions. A scenario in which renewables would contribute […]

November 14, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA Puerto Rico: PREPA preliminary energy plan modeling says maximize renewables

Senate should change its energy bill to support, not hinder, this goal

Over the near term, Puerto Rico should invest as much as possible in renewable energy and storage. That is a key takeaway from the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s (PREPA) preliminary modeling results for its integrated resource plan (IRP), which it plans to file with the Puerto Rico Energy Bureau in late January. PREPA’s preliminary […]

November 5, 2018 Read More →

Questions on Puerto Rico power bill

PV Magazine: Last Friday, Puerto Rico’s senate debated a bill which would set the island on a path to 100% renewable energy by 2050. And while solar and renewable energy advocates all praised the vision that this represents, there were a number of concerns raised about the details. Specifically, while expressing support for the bill […]

October 30, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA Puerto Rico: A step toward renewables or another scandal waiting to happen?

Energy bill is a limp gesture toward true reform

A bill put forth last week by leading Puerto Rico senators pushing for major energy policy reform for the island makes some noteworthy commitments to renewable energy. Unfortunately it would do little to shut down the rush to natural gas development that threatens to crowd out investment in renewables. On the one hand, the bill […]

October 26, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA Puerto Rico: Why PREPA receivership is a worthy proposal

An Imperfect solution, from a suspect source, to be decided by the wrong authority – and it just might work

A group of bondholders and insurers are asking the judge overseeing the bankruptcy of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) to appoint a receiver to manage the dysfunctional agency. Their motion, filed earlier this month in Judge Laura Swain’s federal bankruptcy court, represents a significant change of position on the part of some of […]

October 19, 2018 Read More →

Microgrids, renewables should be priorities in Puerto Rico grid rebuild

USA Today: Visitors to Casa Pueblo, a community center in this mountain hamlet, can tour the solar-powered meeting rooms, listen in on the solar-powered radio station or catch a documentary at the solar-powered movie theater. Later, they could lunch at one of Puerto Rico’s first fully solar-powered restaurants just down the street. On an island […]

October 18, 2018 Read More →
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IEEFA update: The unsustainable debt deal that won’t die

Magical debt thinking persists even with Puerto Rico’s economy declining and PREPA losing money

July’s proposal to pay bondholders 77 cents on the dollar for about a third of the debt of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) straggles on, neither approved nor rejected despite deadlines passing. If the measure of success of a debt settlement is that it offers realistic payouts to bondholders while allowing the debtor […]