Construction of Puerto Rico's first utility-scale solar project, a 24-megawatt plant in Guayama, has begun.
AES Ilumina, a subsidiary of AES Solar, closed on a construction loan, term loan and tax equity non-recourse financing facility from MetLife for the project earlier this month.
Global Energy Services, a Philadelphia based construction firm, will build the project. Project construction is expected to create 200 jobs. The power plant is expected to begin producing electricity in the summer of 2012.
Once built, energy produced by AES Ilumina will be sold to Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority under a 20-year power purchase agreement.
Aside from being the first utility-scale solar project on the island, the AES Ilumina project is also the first of its kind to be awarded economic incentives under the government's new legislation incentivizing instruments in renewable energy generation.
AES Solar is a joint venture between Fortune 500 power company AES Corporation and energy-focused private equity firm Riverstone Holdings L.L.C. AES Solar was formed to develop, own and operate utility scale PV installations and currently has 191 MW either in operation or under construction in the United States, Spain, Greece, Italy, France, Bulgaria and India. – Katrice R. Jalbuena