UAE-CREF inaugurates $50mn solar power projects

The project in the Bahamas, Barbados, and the Saint Vincent and the Grenadines will deliver 2.35 MW of clean energy

Under the $50 million UAE – Caribbean Renewable Energy Fund (UAE-CREF), the largest renewable energy initiative of its kind in the region- three solar power projects have been inaugurated in the Bahamas, Barbados, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.

The partnership is between the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), and Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company, Masdar.

The three projects which broke ground in November 2018, will deliver 2.35 MW of solar and 637 kWh of battery storage capacity while displacing more that 2.6 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually. They will also achieve diesel savings of more than 895,000 l per year, worth about $1.1 million.

Mohammed Saif Al Suwaidi, ADFD Director-General said: “By funding renewable energy solutions globally, ADFD is enabling Small Island Developing States to tackle their development challenges, meet their outlined priorities, and optimise use of their natural resources.”

“We are confident that these projects will continue to drive socio-economic benefits to local communities in the Bahamas, Barbados, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines,” he added.

In the Bahamas, which hopes to generate 30 per cent of its power needs from renewable sources by 2030, the Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium 925kW Solar PV Carport Power Plant will displace 310,000 litres of diesel per year, saving the government $350,000 and offsetting 856 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually.

In Barbados, the government aims to generate 100 per cent of its energy from renewable sources by 2030. As part of this target, the Bridgetown 350kW Solar PV Carport Power Plant and Bow Manston 500kW Solar PV Power Plant in Barbados are expected to save $381,000 per year by displacing 265,000 l of diesel fuel and 975 tonnes of carbon annually.

In Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, the project – with 600kW of solar PV and a 637 kWh, lithium-ion battery – will be able to supply 100 per cent of Union Island’s daytime power requirements. The plant alone also meets over 30 per cent of Union Island’s energy needs and will displace 320,000 l of diesel fuel per year, saving the island $368,000 and offsetting 825 tonnes of carbon annually.

The three projects all represent significant steps forward in realising the three countries’ renewable energy ambitions.

Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi CEO of Masdar said: “Masdar is pleased to leverage its global expertise and experience in renewables to support the Caribbean’s sustainable energy transition, as well as its climate resilience.”

“By delivering tailor-made solutions to address the specific energy needs of each country in partnership with their governments, Masdar is fulfilling its mandate to deliver on the UN Sustainable Development Goals and ensure sustainable energy for all,” he added.

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