Basseterre, St. Kitts, June 16, 2022 (SKNIS): The Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis sets a best practice model as it will lead the way in renewable energy in the Caribbean with the construction of the largest Solar Farm and Battery Storage Facility.
At a brief but historic ceremony on Wednesday, June 15, 2022, to kick off the SOLEC Leclanché Solar Farm, Jomo Williams, General Manager of the St. Kitts Electricity Company (SKELEC), hailed the initiative a significant step towards achieving clean renewable energy for the Federation.
“St, Kitts and Nevis stands to be a model for the other islands worldwide in renewable energy. Today’s kickoff event is indicative of SKELEC’s commitment to our company’s motto – reliability with responsibility,” said Mr. Williams. “SKELEC remains committed to improving resilience, reliability and overall quality of service.
Given the challenges witnessed in the post-COVID-19 era, including the economic impact on both the private and public sector globally due to the Russia-Ukraine war, General Manager Williams noted that the SOLEC Solar Farm and Storage Project presents numerous favourable opportunities for SKELEC.
“The project allows for the reduction of our reliance on fossil fuel and therefore, reducing carbon emissions, making our energy production cleaner and better for the environment as we aim to lower our carbon footprint. In addition to the environmental benefits to be derived from the project, SKELEC stands to reap the financial benefits from reducing the amount spent on fuel, particularly during this period where fuel prices continue to rise,” said Mr. Williams.
Groundwork on the project site commenced on Thursday, June 16. According to Mr. Williams, the farm is expected to provide between 30-35 percent of St. Kitts and Nevis’ baseload energy for the next 20-25 years, while reducing carbon dioxide emissions by more than 700,000 metric tons over that same period.
The official ground-breaking ceremony of the Basseterre Valley Solar and Storage Project for a 35-megawatt solar energy plant and the 45-megawatt-hour battery storage facility was witnessed on December 10, 2020. In September 2019, the Federal Government in collaboration with SKELEC signed an agreement with Leclanché SA – one of the world’s leading energy storage companies based in Switzerland – to construct the largest solar generation and energy storage project in the Caribbean.