By the Caribbean Journal staff
The island of St Kitts is embarking on a new green energy project that could be a game-changer for the wider Caribbean region.
The new project by the St Kitts Electric Company and Leclanche SA will be the largest solar generation plus energy storage project ever built in the Caribbean.
The project, set on government-provided land in the Basseterre Valley, will include a 35.6 MW solar energy plant along with a 44.2 MWh battery storage facility.
“We are set to embark on this vital solar+storage project as a key part of our renewable energy thrust that is critical to the future development of our country,” said St Kitts Minister of Public Infrastructure, Post, Urban Development and Transport Ian “Patches” Liburd.
The project will provide between 25 and 30 percent of St Kitts’ current power generation needs.
“The solar storage project will help solidify the financial strength of SKELEC over the next 20+ years, while substantially reducing [St Kitts’] fuel cost over that period,” Liburd said. “The expected fuel avoidance cost from the installation of the solar farm will not only be beneficial to the energy demand of the Federation but represents that most viable option for securing SKELEC’s financial future.”
Leclanche is one of the world’s top energy storage providers.
The solar and battery storage project represents a giant step forward in the government’s efforts to ensure a clean, safe and affordable energy future for our country. This project offers many benefits for our residents, businesses and the millions of tourists who visit St. Kitts and Nevis each year,” Liburd said.
Ground breaking for the project is set for mid-October 2019, with an anticipated completion date of September 2020.