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PUERTO RICO SENATE CHAIRMAN FILES ENERGY REFORM BILLS

 

On November 20, 2013, Senator Eduardo Bhatia, Chairman of the Senate of Puerto Rico, filed his legislative energy proposal known as the Puerto Rico Energy Relief. Bhatia’s proposal consists of ten (10) legislative measures aimed to assure a reduction in energy costs, generation efficiency, and compliance with environmental standards. The proposal consists of seven (7) bills and three investigative resolutions. It is centered on a plan that would separate the entity responsible for the generation of energy from that responsible for the distribution of energy. Moreover, Bhatia’s proposal is directed at guaranteeing the payment of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s (“PREPA’s”) debt to bondholders. In order to achieve these goals, the Chairman explained that it is necessary to create an Energy Regulatory Commission, allow competition in energy generation, comply with federal environmental regulations, assure payment of the electric energy debt, and evaluate the separation of energy generation from energy distribution.


Site Visits initiated by the Senate Commission

 

Last week the Senate Commission on Energy and Water Resources Affairs initiated on site hearings by visiting various power plant sites in Puerto Rico. Senate Chairman Bhatia expressed that these hearings are part of the study and discussion needed for the approval of his Energy Relief proposal. In addition, Bhatia indicated at the Renewable Energy Producers Association Forum last week, that discussion in public hearings of the energy reform bills will continue into January, and anticipated that it should be voted on by the Senate within the first quarter of 2014, during the next legislative session.


Governor Will File a Separate Energy Reform Bill

 

Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla, and his main energy affairs advisor, have expressed that his team is working on a separate energy reform bill, which should be filed during the following weeks.

 

PREPA Finalizes its Evaluation of the Minimum Technical Requirements (MTR’s) for the Interconnection of Renewable Energy Projects

 

Eng. Juan Alicea Flores, PREPA’s Executive Director, announced on December 12, 2013, that PREPA completed its evaluation to adjust the MTR’s compliance levels for the interconnection of renewable energy projects. The document, which was circulated to renewable energy developers, establishes the ramp rate control and frequency regulation requirements for renewable energy projects.

 

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