Caymans solar tender opportunity closed; Solamon SVPs vow to submit winning proposal next round
According to Solamon Energy SVP Michael Mitchell, although the current solicitation to get renewables onto the grid in the Caymans is closed, the forthcoming solar opportunities are many and varied across the Islands and he is confident, with SVP Steve Kuiack remaining on the ground, Solamon is well positioned to submit winning proposals in the future.
- (1888PressRelease) July 05, 2012 - Toronto, ON - "Both Steve and I have been communicating with key leaders in government and business," explains Mitchell, "and we look forward to building an Apollo Acre™ for the CUC one day."
In 2009 the Cayman Islands government publicly announced it would pursue renewable energy as a means of diversifying the Islands' generating sources, reducing energy bills, and minimizing impact on the environment. "The government is keen on pushing forward a greener more environmentally-friendly Cayman that uses renewable energy more widely," notes Deputy Premier and Minister of District Administration, Works and Gender Affairs, the Hon. Juliana O'Connor-Connolly, at that time.
Caribbean Utilities Company (CUC) originally short-listed candidates from more than 50 proposals it received to supply renewable energy to the power grid in Grand Cayman. The CUC's request for expressions of interest, which was issued last August, stated that the power company planned to accept up to 13 megawatts of renewable energy. The deadline for submitting these proposals was December 2011.
Joey Ebanks, the new managing director of Cayman's Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) and chair of a new committee to promote the government's new renewable energy programme, will be spearheading the initiative designed to begin reducing Cayman's carbon footprint. The government recently announced a planned $15 million investment to see 1,500 homes fitted with solar panels.
Ebanks told CNS Media that Cayman "has been too, too slow" in making steps towards reducing its carbon footprint and this announcement represents a serious step towards reducing the 100% dependence the country has on fossil fuels. Ebanks, who resigned from CUC some two months ago, said that the first people to receive the panels will be those who are being assisted by the social services department to pay light bills, and after that the programme will then help pensioners on fixed incomes to get panels fitted on their roofs.
Currently, CUC's 17 generating units - 15 diesel and two gas turbines - have a combined capacity of slightly more than 151 megawatts. According to the Electricity Regulatory Authority, CUC is now preparing a report on which proposals it is recommending. According to the CUC's request, the selected investor would become an Independent Power Producer, and would then need to enter into a power purchase agreement with CUC for the supply of electricity from its alternative energy generators.
The ERA will review and approve that power purchase agreement, whereby the selected renewable energy provider would need to secure a generating license from the regulator. "It's a process we fully understand and are prepared to implement along with our partners, including financiers to execute any sized deal," concludes Mitchell.
Solamon Energy typically offers a ground-mounted solar array of integrated photovoltaic cells over a package of land called the Apollo Acre™. The company now also designs and installs custom solutions with local partners to provide roof-mounted and parking lot systems that are easily augmented by micro wind turbine technology and other innovative features to supply renewable energy.
About Solamon: Solamon Energy Corp. sells integrated arrays of ground-mounted and rooftop photovoltaic cells. These solar power plants are connected by cable to varied transmission equipment, including converters, inverters and batteries, utilizing 5 acres of land per unit; each unit is called an Apollo Acre™. Additionally, it is expected the company's business activities will spin-off many jobs locally, given engineering requirements, construction, unit commissioning and subsequent maintenance.