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Construction starts on co-located 99MWh BESS in Dominican Republic

dominican republic

Construction has started on the first major solar-plus-storage project in the Dominican Republic, which features a 24.8MW/99MWh battery energy storage system (BESS).

The Comisión Nacional De Energia (CNE) of the Dominican Republic announced the start of work on the Dominicana Azul solar project shortly in late December (22 December).

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The Carribean nation’s president Luis Abinader attended the ceremony to launch the project, which will feature 101.152MWp of solar PV. The attached four-hour BESS will help to shift that power into periods of lower generation.

The technology provider of the BESS has not yet been revealed nor when the project is expected to come online.

The CNE said that Dominicana Azul will generate 176.4GWh of energy a year for dispatch on the National Interconnected Energy System (SENI or Sistema Energético Nacional Interconectado), reducing 1000 tons of CO2 emissions.

The project, which is being built in the municipality of Cabrera, María Trinidad Sánchez province, is being developed and built by Zenith Energy Corp. The country shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti to the west.

The government of the Dominican Republic has recently recognised the need for energy storage to integrate intermittent renewable energy generation, and the CNE recently issued two resolutions to kickstart the market.

The first, CNE-AD-0003-2023, declared the need for battery storage for its ‘Energy Arbitration’ service with primary sources of variable renewable energy in the electricity market. The second, CNE-AD-0004-2023, established the guidelines for the administrative treatment of the technology in the electricity market.

The CNE added there are several projects undergoing review to add energy storage to solar generation.

Island nations in the Caribbean and globally are deploying energy storage along with renewables to ensure dispatchable, reliable generation as they phase out fossil fuels, usually imported from abroad at very high cost.

In December, reported on projects in the US Virgin Islands and St Kitts & Nevis being deployed by Honeywell and Leclanché respectively, while in July regulators in Barbados ordered a four-year pilot of battery storage technology using a 50MW system.

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