By The Star Staff
The Renewable Energy Producers Association (APER by its Spanish initials) says statements made late last week by U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm about the real possibility that Puerto Rico could achieve 100 percent conversion to renewable energy by 2050 confirm the positions held by the entity and the progress made to date toward the island’s green energy goals.
The APER brings together several large-scale renewable energy generation companies.
“As the PR100 study rightly points out, there is no doubt that large-scale renewable energy generation is imperative to achieving the goal of having an energy system that is reliable, stable and economical,” APER Executive Director Julián Herencia, an engineer, said in a written statement issued Friday. “To achieve energy stability and overcome generation deficiency, it is necessary to move toward true resilience through intervention using all energy generation modalities. The impression that only one scale or modality of energy will get us to our goal is an illusion. The study reveals that a set of scales and modalities are essential for our goal. In addition, the large-scale source reaches everywhere, whether or not you have solar panels, and at a lower cost for consumers.”
Herencia stressed that Puerto Rico currently has large-scale renewable-energy projects that generate 220 megawatts, which contributes to the stability of the electricity system, but it is not enough.
“The projection for the year 2025, when according to Puerto Rico’s plan we must generate 40 percent from renewable energy sources, will be achieved as long as all generation models are taken into consideration, from panels and batteries in homes to large-scale projects around the island,” he said.
Herencia added that APER has identified areas of opportunity that, if accepted by regulatory bodies and state and federal authorities, will allow the accelerated deployment of all existing technologies in order to meet the expectations of a total energy transformation.
“We are ready to insert ourselves into the discussion proposed by the Secretariat so that the concerns and priorities of renewable energy proponents are heard,” he said. “The openness to an ongoing conversation with local and federal entities already exists and it is time to present our recommendations and proposals. We already have several meetings on the agenda that we are sure will move the country in the right direction toward an energy transformation that is efficient, cost-effective and permanent.”