WEB Aruba N.V.’s ‘Sunrise Solar Park’ gets a ‘green light’ for initiation.
May 25, 2017: Oranjestad - Aruba: The island of Aruba is preparing for what will be one of the largest solar parks constructed to date in the Caribbean, according to the C.E.O – C.O.O of WEB Aruba N.V., Mr. Luis Oduber. WEB Aruba N.V. and Spanish company, ISOTRON have partnered up to make this project a reality and officially marked the beginning of the solar park during the signing ceremony on the 23rd of May.
This ambitious 5.9 MW project is yet another milestone of achieving Aruba’s 2020 Vision together with Government of Aruba, led by Prime Minister Eman and Minister of Energy Mr. Mike de Meza, and represents a 16 million florin investment that will cover an area of approximately 990,000 square feet located in San Nicolas. According to both partners the ‘Sunrise Solar Park’ will be constructed within the next 8 months.
According to the C.E.O of WEB, what makes this project unique for the island and the Caribbean is, that for the first time in history, WEB Aruba N.V. will also be the sole owner of this solar park. “Normally these types of projects are considered an ‘Independent Power Producer’ (IPP), consequentially, its profits are allocated abroad. However, this time we can proudly state that we will also be owner of our very own solar park”, said Mr. Oduber.
The solar project is also significant because it has achieved the lowest price achieved for solar photovoltaic (PV) in the Caribbean to date.
For the past five years, WEB Aruba N.V. has completed several solar PV projects under the auspice of the ‘Aruba Renewable Energy Strategy’ (ARES). These projects include, the 3.4 MW Solar Park at the Reina Beatrix Airport, solar panel installations at Scol Basico Kudawecha, Abraham de Veer School and the multi-functional accommodation center in the district of Noord.
The 5.9 MW solar park is one of the two remaining solar projects that WEB plans to implement as part of the ARES. “Our goal is to reach a 5% average of solar energy penetration on our grid. If we compare it to the ‘Wind park Vader Piet’ (WPVP) wind energy project, it reaches the 18%”, informed the C.E.O. of WEB Aruba N.V.
The international procurement process attracted companies from all over the world - where a total of 64 companies showed interest to take part in the project. Rocky Mountain Institute and Carbon War Room’s (RMI-CWR) Islands Energy Program in partnership with TNO Caribbean supported the development of the technical specifications and procurement documents and led the global proposal dissemination process. RMI-CWR has worked in partnership with Aruba and WEB Aruba and TNO on their renewable energy transition since 2013.
Manuel Ocáriz from ISOTRON explained that for them, this project represents a big opportunity to also contribute to the WEB Aruba’s mission and vision of becoming cleaner, greener and fuel oil free. “We have focused since last year to target the Caribbean zone, due to the potential in terms of solar irradiation and also due to the Aruba's Government desires to ensure the independence, preservation of the environment and also diversify the energy resources”, Mr. Ocáriz expressed.
WEB Aruba N.V. is proud to initiate the ‘Sunrise Solar Park’ project and will continue demonstrating how Aruba strives to maintain its leadership position in the Caribbean when it comes to renewable energy. WEB Aruba N.V. thanks all the departments who have also contributed to the development of this project and also, The Government of Aruba, Utilities Aruba N.V., N.V. Elmar, ISOTRON, Refineria di Aruba and CITGO who have also collaborated in the process of making the ‘Sunrise Solar Park’ become a reality for the island of Aruba.
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