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Act No. 17: Puerto Rico is Going 100% Solar

Act No. 17

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has stated that due to the onslaught of hurricanes Irma and Maria in September 2017, Puerto Rico suffered “the worst natural disaster in the history of the United States”. More than 80% of the electric grid was lost. Furthermore, Puerto Rico has experienced enough inefficiency and unreliability in the electric utility services at an unreasonable cost to residential, commercial, and industrial customers despite the existence of a vertically integrated monopolistic structure. This disaster led to the Puerto Rico Energy Public Policy Act Number 17 of April 11, 2019.  

Solar Revolution in Puerto Rico

The purpose of Act 17 is to establish a public policy on energy to set the parameter for a resilient, reliable, and robust renewable energy system with just and reasonable rates for all classes of customers. Act Number 17 sets a goal to make Puerto Rico 100% sustainable on solar energy by 2050, so it is making notorious efforts in making it feasible for energy system users to produce and participate in energy generation.  

One of the objectives of Act Number 17 is to reduce and eventually eliminate electric power generation from fossil fuels by integrating orderly and gradually alternative renewable energy. A Renewable Portfolio Standard is established to achieve a minimum of forty percent (40%) on or before 2025; sixty percent (60%) on or before 2040; and one hundred percent (100%) on or before 2050. The Puerto Rico Grid Resilience and Transitions to 100% Renewable Energy Study (PR100) comprehensively analyzes possible pathways for Puerto Rico to achieve its renewable energy goals while incorporating stakeholders’ perspectives and advancing energy resilience for all Puerto Ricans. The study PR100 states that Puerto Rico can achieve its energy transition goals to operate 100% in resilient renewable energy.  

On February 7, 2024, The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and FEMA published a summary of results from the PR100 Study, which concludes that Puerto Rico can successfully transition to and meet its projected electricity needs with 100% renewable energy, by 2050. The final report will be available this March 2024.   

On November 2023, DOE announced up to $440 million of funding to install rooftop solar and batteries in Puerto Rico’s most vulnerable communities. This funding supports thousands of local clean energy jobs, and it helps Puerto Rico achieve its goal of 100% renewable energy by 2050. DOE anticipates the first installations will begin in Spring 2024.  

Puerto Rico residents can visit www.energy.gov/solarPR to check their eligibility for the Puerto Rico Energy Resilience Fund (PR-ERF) and to start collecting required documentation for their application as well as their local Solar Ambassador. 

Solar system owners in Puerto Rico can be fully exempt from sales and property taxes on their solar panel purchase. The federal government provides a solar tax credit to help Puerto Rico residents save on their solar system purchase. On top of that, Puerto Rico offers a 30% tax deduction (up to $1,500) for expenses incurred in the purchase and installation of solar equipment to heat water for residential use.  

EG4’s Net Metering Solutions

Nowadays, going solar is a smart energy solution for anyone in Puerto Rico looking for a reliable source of power while saving money and energy. Currently, LUMA is buying electricity at $.10 per kW, and once a year, on June 30th of 2024, clients get paid for the excess of exported energy in a year. EG4 has net metering solutions that can set you up to receive credit for excess electricity generated to the local power grid. EG4’s robust ESS Systems have you covered. The ESS adds the benefits of storage to your existing non-storage system, providing backup power, energy independence, and reliability without the need for reconfiguration. This transformative journey signifies a bold commitment to a more resilient, reliable, and equitable energy future for all Puerto Ricans. 

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Puerto Rico's Act No. 17 aims for 100% solar energy by 2050, supported by FEMA and DOE initiatives. Residents benefit from tax exemptions and solar incentives.

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