We Want Sun and We Want More: 75% Distributed Renewable Generation in 15 Years in Puerto Rico Is Achievable and Affordable

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In 2018, Queremos Sol (“We Want Sun”), a multi-sectoral coalition of Puerto Rican community, environmental and labor organizations, put forward a policy proposal for the renewable energy transformation of Puerto Rico’s electrical system under a reformed public ownership model. The proposal emphasized efficiency and distributed renewable energy, particularly rooftop solar and behind-the-meter storage, as a strategy to provide resilience to households in future blackouts, to reduce the impact on agricultural and ecologically valuable lands from utility-scale renewable energy projects, and to reduce the island’s dependence on imported fossil fuels and extensive transmission systems. Queremos Sol proposes a transformation that is equitable, affordable and that ensures a transition to renewables that is fair to PREPA workers.

In this report, we summarize the result of in-depth grid modeling studies completed in early 2021 to investigate specific technical aspects of the Queremos Sol proposal. Specifically, Telos Energy and EE Plus performed modeling of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure, using data obtained from PREPA, to analyze scenarios of increasing penetration of renewable energy, up to 75% (with over half of that from residential installations) of total electricity consumption by 2035. Energy Futures Group used these grid modeling results to estimate costs.

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