PR – The United Arab Emirates-Caribbean Renewable Energy Fund (UAE-CREF) is partnering with the Government of Grenada to develop a Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Hybrid/ Battery Storage Plant, in Limlair, Carriacou.
The grant of US$3.2 million was announced at the Eighth Session of the General Assembly of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in January 2018 and is aimed at bolstering efforts to transition from fossil fuel economies to economies based on renewable energy, which remains a key deliverable in advancing Grenada’s Energy Agenda.
A requirement for Grenada accessing this project is that Grenada Electricity Services (GRENLEC) provide a commitment to interconnect the project to the grid in Carriacou. Despite the fact that the project will provide significant benefits to the electricity sector, and the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission’s (PURC) directive that once the technical specifications are met the project must be interconnected as provided for in law, the commitment was never given although requested since 2018.
Following Government’s recent repurchase of GRENLEC shares, the company has now provided definitive commitment to interconnect the project.
This definitive confirmation of facilitating interconnection was a critical component in assuring UAE-CREF of Grenada’s commitment to implement the project and has been welcomed by the world as an important signal of Government’s actualization of its renewable energy ambitions as envisioned in the Electricity Act of 2016 and New Energy Policy which have already brought significant financial and infrastructural benefits to the country.
The plant will have a production capacity of 600 KW and a storage capacity of 300 KW that could be increased based on the tender prices received. When operational, it is anticipated that it will produce a savings of 60% in diesel fuel imported into Carriacou for electricity generation, significantly reduce the related carbon dioxide emissions, and increase climate resilience. Currently, the operations in Carriacou are subsidized by Mainland Grenada.
The UAE-CREF has confirmed that the evaluation of tenders will be finalized at the end of February 2021, paving the way for the Engineering, Procurement, and Construction (EPC) Contractor to commence work in March of this year. It is important to note that the selected EPC contractor shall engage and subcontract local construction firm(s), to provide required services.
A fundamental feature of this project is the integration of local human capacity building/ training in the operation and maintenance of the Solar PV Hybrid Storage Plant. A cohort of suitably qualified individuals will be identified for hands-on training in order to build their expertise which will be critical to ensuring the plant’s effective management and sustainability.
The UAE-CREF is a partnership between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC) of the UAE, Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), and the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (MASDAR), which is coordinating the design and implementation of the project.
This project will be administered by a Cabinet appointed Steering Committee, comprising representatives from the Ministry of Energy, the Ministry of Carriacou and Petite Martinique Affairs, Grenada Electricity Services Limited, and other stakeholder representatives.