Cambio, a nongovernment organization committed to promoting sustainability in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean, presented on Wednesday a study that revealed that Puerto Rico could provide resiliency to 100 percent of homes through the use of federal funds.
Specifically, the analysis concluded that the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) could reduce energy costs if it starts investing $9.6 billion of available federal funds for installing solar panels in homes and businesses. According to the study, the island could generate 75 percent of its electricity from “clean and reliable” sources in 15 years and reduce fossil fuel expenditures to $430 million a year by 2035.
“The study shows that there is no need to use public funds for new fossil fuel projects or conversion of existing plants to natural gas. On the contrary, PREPA should start now with investing $9.65 billion in available federal funds to install rooftop solar and storage systems,” said Ingrid M. Vila Biaggi, engineer, president and co-founder of Cambio.
“The transformation to energy self-sufficiency would allow for stable, lower prices with less investment in transmission and distribution than PREPA has proposed,” said Cathy Kunkel, energy finance analyst with the Institute of Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA).