The Puerto Rican Solar Business Accelerator (PRSBA) is a program to support solar workforce development, finance, and microgrid development in Puerto Rico. Led by IREC in partnership with Pathstone Corporation, Inc., it will expand and strengthen the Puerto Rican solar industry and spur the development of a highly qualified workforce.
This program is bringing together businesses, community members, other nonprofit organizations, academic institutions, and solar energy advocates to transform Puerto Rico’s energy system, working together to achieve a renewable and sustainable future.
Our Program Areas
Solar Workforce Development
Solar Finance Innovation
Business Technical Assistance
New: A Campaign for Solar Consumers
Since Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico has seen a dramatic increase in consumer interest in solar energy. To educate and empower these consumers, IREC in partnership with the Institute for Building Technology and Safety (IBTS) and the Puerto Rico Independent Office of Consumer Protection (OIPC) have launched an informational campaign for those who are considering solar energy installations for their homes or businesses.
The campaign will include three short videos. The first, “Cómo seleccionar un sistema fotovoltaico para su negocio” (How to select a solar photovoltaic system for your business), describes the recommended steps for installing solar energy at small and medium-sized businesses.
Learn more by visiting our Spanish language website here.
Development Team Selected for Solar Energy Microgrid in Maricao, Puerto Rico
IREC and the Monte Azul Foundation have selected a consortium of local businesses to develop a new solar energy microgrid in Maricao, Puerto Rico! The consortium, Grupo EPC Microrred, is made up of six Puerto-Rico based small businesses, three of which are women-owned. The microgrid project will include 140 kWDC in solar panels and 169 kWh in battery storage.
The Maricao microgrid will provide clean and reliable energy to local establishments that offer essential services to the community, such as health care and banking. Participating companies include SunJuice LLC Solar, Lisa Spickers LLC, NEO ERA Group LLC, Solar Step LLC, ecologicAll PSC, and SunSol LLC.
Castañer, Puerto Rico Launches New Microgrid Project
In May 2022, local businesses joined other community members in Castañer, Puerto Rico, to celebrate the installation of a new solar energy microgrid. This project was developed through a collaborative partnership between the PRSBA, the local nonprofit Cooperativa Hidroeléctrica de Montaña, and the University of Puerto Rico—Mayagüez.
The microgrid includes a 40 kW solar energy installation and 35 kWh in battery storage. When the final phase is completed, it will include approximately 225 kW in solar panel installations and 500 kWh in storage. Installation and development was led by the company Borintek.
The Castañer solar microgrid project won Advanced Energy’s Community Impact Award at Puerto Rico Energy Week 2023! Learn more and explore other winners.
Watch our two-part video below to learn more!
Microgrid Wins Community Impact Award
The Castañer Microgrid won the Advanced Energy Group Community Impact Award granted as part of Puerto Rico Energy Week 2023! IREC Senior Program Manager Loraima Jaramillo-Nieves joined C.P. Smith, Executive Director of the Cooperative Hidroeléctrica de la Montaña, to accept the award on behalf of the community and the rest of the team.
Gender Equality: A Case Study at Puerto Rico’s Río Piedras Market
The future of Puerto Rico’s solar industry will depend on the strength and diversity of its workforce. At the Plaza del Mercado de Río Piedras in San Juan, IREC has partnered with the Hispanic Federation to install a 250 kW solar energy system on the rooftop. IREC worked with the installer, NEO ERA Energy Solutions, to prioritize the hiring of a diverse workforce that includes women and the LGBTQ+ community.
Ada Ramona Miranda, one of the solar workers at the market, hopes her own experience can help reduce barriers for more women to work in clean energy. “At every moment I thank all the women who’ve opened doors for us, because we aren’t the first ones here,” she said.
The PRSBA encompasses the following program areas:
- Solar workforce development in Puerto Rico
- Technical assistance to Puerto Rico solar companies
- Expanding financing options for solar projects
- Helping two communities develop, acquire, install, and operate two solar energy microgrid pilot projects
Puerto Rico enacted a law in 2019 which established the goal to achieve 100% renewable energy by 2050. This ambitious objective will require unprecedented growth in all renewables and especially solar, the most abundant renewable energy source in this U.S. territory.
IREC builds the foundation for rapid adoption of clean energy and energy efficiency to benefit people, the economy, and our planet. For nearly 40 years, IREC has made clean energy possible for millions of Americans through cutting-edge solutions that advance renewable energy, grid modernization, and energy efficiency. Today, our work continues in response to the urgent need to transition to clean energy—to mitigate climate change, improve the resiliency of our communities, and ensure all people benefit from a just transition to a clean energy future.
Pathstone Corporation is a private, not-for-profit community development and human services organization dedicated to eliminating poverty and strengthening families and individuals in the communities we have been serving since 1969. Low-income families and economically distressed communities throughout New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Ohio, Indiana, Virginia, Vermont, and Puerto Rico are the primary beneficiaries of its services and resources. This organization delivers quality career and employment services that enhance the skills, performance and potential of individuals, leading to meaningful employment in desired career pathways. Learn more at Pathstone.Org.
Other PRSBA partners include the Microgrid Laboratory at the University of Puerto Rico—Mayagüez, Oxfam, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), and Institute for Building Technology and Safety.
To get in touch with us about the PRBSA, contact Loramia Jaramillo, Program Manager; or Carlos Alberto Velázquez López, Program Director. Fill out our contact form here and these individuals will get back to you promptly.
The EDA Program Number is #01-79-14864.Contact Us