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(GIS) – In 2014, the Government of Saint Lucia announced refined energy targets, setting a renewable energy penetration target of 35 percent, and an energy efficiency target of 20 percent reduction in consumption in the public sector, both to be achieved by 2020.
To reach energy and climate goals while ensuring cost-effectiveness, a deliberately planned energy transition process is critical. This is particularly true for island nations given the fact that there is significant competition for land use due to constrained geographical size.
The energy transition opportunity provides a win-win situation in which the Government of Saint Lucia supports constituents through cheaper electricity, and LUCELEC continues to profit and provide reliable service.
The analytical team supporting the IRP initially examined 14 scenarios for the future energy mix of Saint Lucia, spanning different mixes and ownership approaches for new energy generation. Upon detailed investigation, five viable focus scenarios emerged, each forecasting net benefits when compared against the existing diesel-based business, although all scenarios included the continued operation of diesel generation to ensure system stability and cost reduction.
The IRP finds that a portfolio of centrally owned diesel, solar, wind, and storage offers the best economics (low cost to operate the system, lowest rates at the end of the studied timeframe, relatively low debt, and a strong hedge against volatility in diesel fuel prices), while providing continued reliability.