Content Solar Ltd. Launches Commercial Operations of Jamaica’s First Utility-Scale Solar PV Plant
Kingston, Jamaica—(August 28, 2016)—Content Solar Ltd., owned by WRB Serra, today commenced commercial operations of its 20 megawatt grid-connected solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant in Content Village, Clarendon, Jamaica.
The Content Solar plant, developed by WRB Energy, is one of the largest solar projects of its kind in the Caribbean, delivering clean and reliable renewable energy to help reduce Jamaica’s dependence on imported fuel for electricity generation. According to Robert Blenker, president and CEO of Florida-based WRB Energy, the renewable energy development arm of WRB Enterprises, the energy from the Content Solar plant will power more than 20,000 households over the next 20 years under a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Jamaica Public Service Company (JPS).
As Jamaica’s first utility-scale solar plant, the $63 million Content Solar site covers 154 acres with more than 97,000 solar panels installed. The solar project employed more than 480 Jamaicans during construction and contributed millions of dollars in wage labor, products and services to the local economy.
The construction of the Content Solar plant is one of three projects awarded as part of Jamaica’s Office of Utilities Regulations (OUR) 115 megawatt tender for renewable energy generation. The project is part of Jamaica’s goal of 20 percent renewable energy production by 2030 and long-term vision for greater energy independence and economic development.
With a successful track record spanning decades of developing renewable energy projects in the Caribbean and Latin America, WRB Energy welcomed the experience of working in Jamaica because of the nation’s legal and regulatory stability, economic and fiscal policies, and the ability to partner collaboratively with JPS. “Content Solar represents the culmination of three years of work to ensure that the project waswell designed, well placed, and compatible with Jamaica. Our goal is to increase renewable energy production cost-effectively and help stabilize electricity costs for sustainable economic growth in the communities we serve,” says Blenker.
Financing for the $63 million Content Solar project was provided by a $47 million debt agreement with the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) and the U.S. Government’s Development Finance Institution in 2015. Sponsor equity was provided by WRB Serra, a strategic partner of WRB Enterprises and WRB Energy focused on sustainable infrastructure investments in the Caribbean and Latin America. The Content Solar plant is the second OPIC-financed project in support of the U.S. Caribbean Energy Security Initiative.
About WRB Enterprises, WRB Energy, and WRB Serra
WRB Enterprises is a family-owned, privately held company with businesses focused on clean energy production, integrated utility operations, and community investments for more than five decades. WRB Enterprises has extensive experience in renewable energy development, financing, electric utilities, water treatment services, telecommunications, banking, real estate, machinery, and power generation equipment. For more information: www.wrbenterprises.com.
WRB Energy, a WRB Enterprises partner company, has long-standing, proven experience in developing, building and operating renewable energy systems and integrated utilities throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. For more information: www.wrbenergy.com.
WRB Serra invests in renewable energy, energy efficiency, and water infrastructure in Latin America and the Caribbean, with projects ranging from early-stage construction to commercial operations. For more information: www.wrbserra.com.