04 02, 2024

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Arecibo, Puerto Rico April 2, 2024 – Clean energy leader Enel North America and intelligent power management company Eaton today announced the completion of Puerto Rico’s largest clean energy microgrid. The system, located at Eaton’s circuit breaker manufacturing facility in Arecibo, combines a 5-megawatt (MWac) solar system with a 1.1 MW battery and existing onsite generators. By generating and storing clean energy independently from the external power grid, the system substantially reduces the facility’s carbon footprint, boosts energy resilience and strengthens community infrastructure.

“As the impacts of climate change worsen, large energy users are stepping up to power their facilities sustainably,” said Matt Barnes, head of distributed energy solutions at Enel North America. “Enel is proud to partner with Eaton in building a future for manufacturing that reaches beyond facility walls to support energy resiliency for the broader community. The urgency to deploy microgrids—especially in regions with vulnerable electrical infrastructure—has never been greater, and Enel is delivering the clean and flexible systems that the energy transition requires.”

The solar system is expected to generate nearly 10 GWh of renewable energy each year to avoid approximately 7,100 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually and reduce costs by nearly 20%. Eaton’s focus on sustainability at its Arecibo facility is part of the company’s broad initiative targeting a 50% reduction in carbon emissions across its operations by 2030.

“Communities and businesses everywhere need far more sustainable, resilient and affordable power,” said Mike Yelton, president, Americas Region, Electrical Sector at Eaton. “The projects at our Arecibo manufacturing facility provide a blueprint on how to put the energy transition to work—delivering important benefits for the community and our business. Together, with our longtime project partner Enel North America, we’re demonstrating the important role microgrids play in creating a robust energy infrastructure prepared to address the impact from climate change.”

"All of us at LUMA are committed to building a cleaner, more reliable and resilient electric grid. As Puerto Rico's T&D operator and having helped connect over 84,000 customers to Net Energy Metering programs, we are proud to support customers like Eaton and Enel that are championing clean energy and energy efficiency and look forward to many more industrial customers following their lead,” said Juan Saca, president and CEO of LUMA.

The microgrid is designed to withstand Category 5 strength hurricane-force winds and provides added value in normal grid-connected operations by generating renewable energy that can be consumed, stored and delivered back to the local grid to reduce stress on the island’s utility infrastructure. Eaton and Enel are initiating construction of a second microgrid at Eaton’s Las Piedras manufacturing facility to further strengthen energy resilience in Puerto Rico.

Enel North America built, owns and operates the system on behalf of Eaton. Enel financed the project under an energy-as-a-service model, shifting Eaton’s investment in the microgrid system from a capital to an operational expense. Eaton provided installation expertise and key technologies for the microgrid system, including its Power Xpert microgrid solutions and leading power distribution equipment.

About Enel North America

Enel North America, part of the Enel Group, is a clean energy leader in North America and is working to electrify the economy and build a net-zero carbon future by decarbonizing energy supply, electrifying transportation, creating resilient grids, and promoting a just, equitable transition. Enel North America serves over 4,500 businesses, utilities, and cities through renewable power generation, demand response, distributed energy resources, smart e-mobility solutions and services, energy trading, and more. Its installed portfolio includes over 10.3 GW of utility-scale renewable capacity, 1.3 GW of utility-scale energy storage and 106.9 MW of distributed energy storage capacity, 4.9 GW of demand response capacity, and 193,000 electric vehicle charging ports. Visit enelnorthamerica.com and follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, X (Twitter), and YouTube to learn more.  

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