US Virgin Islands Mulls Post-HOVENSA Energy Options With Federal Officials


Above: the discussions in Washington (Photo: OG)

By the Caribbean Journal staff

With the closure of the HOVENSA refinery in February, the US Virgin Islands lost its main source of gasoline, jet fuel, diesel and propane.

The change led the territory, which is not connected to any larger power grid, to discuss the possibility of soliciting support from the federal government to develop an inter-connected power grid with Puerto Rico in Washington meetings last week.

The HOVENSA refinery was the largest in the Caribbean, and had been in St Croix since 1966.

On Wednesday, an energy solution for the territory was the subject of discussions between Governor John de Jongh and officials from the US Department of Energy.

The two sides broached the possibility of converting combustion turbines to fire natural gas in the territory, along with the aforementioned interconnection with Puerto Rico.

De Jongh was joined by Chief of Staff Pamela Berkowsky, Attorney Robert G Smith, WAPA Executive Director Hugo Hodge and VI Bureau of Economic Research Director Wharton Berger.

The US Virgin Islands pays some of the highest energy rates in the United States.


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