St Kitts and Nevis will build two new solar farms, according to Cartwright Farrell, CEO of the St Kitts Electricity Corporation (SKELEC).
The projects leverages the success of the country’s existing solar farm located at Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport. The airport solar farm was a joint venture between the St. Christopher Air and Sea Ports Authority (SCASPA) and the governments of St Kitts and Nevis and Taiwan who donated $1 million. The 750 kilowatt solar farm was built by Speedtech Energy Company Ltd and currently provides about 3000 KWh per day.
The two countries are now planning two additional solar farms which are expected to produce 500 kilowatts and 1 MW of energy, respectively. The first phase will be in the east Basseterre valley.
Mr. Farrell said, “that will save over 40,000 gallons of diesel per year over the lifetime of the project and save SKELEC over EC$8 million in diesel savings”.
Long term, St Kitts grid will need to be improved as renewable energy grows. Bertil Browne, SKELEC’s renewable energy and special projects engineer, explained that SKELEC recently completed a study using a US consulting firm, which said, “The company has been advised not to put more than 4.4MW of wind and solar combined on the grid, otherwise instability in electricity supply could occur”.
Similarly with geothermal energy, Browne indicated that the maximum MW that could be accepted from this source would be the minimum base load that is usually experienced during a 24 hour period, or the lowest off-peak hours output.
Source: St Kitts and Nevis Observer