Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority enters solar-plus-storage PPA with Convergent Energy + Power


Convergent Energy + Power has signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA) for output from a solar-plus-storage power plant.

The energy storage developer said it had been successful in a competitive solicitation — hosted by the Puerto Rico Electricity Board (PREB) on PREPA’s behalf – with a 100MW solar PV project paired with 55MW of battery energy storage. The capacity of the battery energy storage system (BESS) was not disclosed.

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Convergent Energy + Power’s locally based subsidiary, Convergent Coamo, will own and operate the project which will be located in the southern central Puerto Rico town of Coamo.

It is among the first contracts to be awarded to renewable energy and energy storage projects through a tranche of PREPA procurement, which again is part of a number of tranches that are ongoing.

In April, our sister site PV Tech reported the launch of a Request for Proposals (RfP) for 500MW of renewable energy and 250MW of energy storage on the Caribbean US island territory, which was noted to be the second tranche among six.

In total, PREPA is seeking 3,750MW of renewables and 1,500MW of storage through the solicitations, including distributed virtual power plants (VPP) as well as large-scale front-of-the-meter resources, with contract terms running between 10 and 25 years.

Puerto Rico is targeting 100% renewable energy by 2050, with incremental steps along the way including 40% by 2025 and 60% by 2040. It is also well known that PREPA, which had been facing severe financial difficulties already, was thrown into major crisis along with Puerto Rico’s residents as Hurricanes Maria and Irma in 2017 destroyed as much as 80% of the region’s grid network.

Switching to higher shares of renewable energy with batteries would therefore not only increase the region’s resiliency to future weather events and reduce the need to rebuild transmission and distribution (T&D) infrastructure, but also as with other island regions like Hawaii, reduce reliance on expensive and polluting imported fossil fuels for electricity generation.

Convergent Energy + Power said it expects its Coama project to come online in 2024. Recent projects by the company reported by Energy-Storage.news include a solar-plus-storage power plant built in New York State as a cheaper, ‘non-wires alternative’ to T&D buildout at a congested load pocket, completed in May. Others include a portfolio of three mid-sized solar-plus-storage projects in Maryland, a 5MW/15MWh standalone BESS for a cooperative in Massachusetts and three standalone BESS projects totalling 100MWh brought online in California in January and February of this year.

Regular readers of Energy-Storage.news however might know the company best for its commercial and industrial (C&I) behind-the-meter battery systems for customers in Ontario, Canada, where peak shaving offers big reductions in electricity costs for large industrial consumers of power. One such project, completed last September for a specialist glass manufacturing plant could save the facility owner CA$450,000 (US$356,000) per megawatt on power costs over summer periods, Convergent Energy + Power claimed at the time.

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