Caribbean Business reports that the $215 million project in the south coast town of Santa Isabel will become the largest wind farm in the Caribbean when it starts spinning on Wednesday. The developer of Finca de Viento Santa Isabel, California-based Pattern Energy, has entered into a 20-year power purchase and operating agreement with the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (Prepa) for all of the wind energy generated from the project.
The 44 turbines spread over 3,700 acres leased from the island government’s Lands Authority is expected to generate clean, renewable energy equal to the annual power needs of approximately 25,000 homes. [. . .] Like other alternative energy projects, Pattern’s wind farm drew protests by environmentalists, farmers and bird watchers. The company says the project is in harmony with Santa Isabel’s standing at the heart of one of the island’s key agricultural region. The project is creating approximately 150 jobs during construction and 8-10 jobs during operation.
The Santa Isabel wind farm is among a range of projects spurred by recently implemented government incentives aimed at jumpstarting alternative energy sources and pare Puerto Rico’s heavy reliance on dirty and volatile petroleum for power. Other commercial-scale renewable energy projects in the works include wind farms such as Punta Lima (Naguabo) and Windmar (Guayanilla).
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