CUC, OfReg plan major changes for consumers, renewable energy program | Cayman Compass
Seeking to diffuse peak power demands, the Caribbean Utilities Company will make major changes, starting this month, to its renewable energy program ahead of a report about allocating resources during the next 30 years.
The changes, according to CUC and regulators at the Utilities and Competition Office, will include raising the 9 megawatt cap on the Consumer Owned Renewable Energy program, known as CORE, reducing some payments to program subscribers, expanding the size of private solar arrays – called “distributed energy resources” – and allowing them to connect to the national electricity grid without belonging to CORE.
The company says further changes will follow in January when it announces fresh charges for demand billing customers – temporarily limited to large commercial enterprises.
The changes come as CUC meets steadily rising power demands – reaching a record 105.6 megawatts on Aug. 29, according to its third-quarter report earlier this month – and makes increasing investments to meet them. In July 2016, for example, the utility commissioned two new 18.7 MW diesel generators, costing $85 million, designed to last 25 years.
CUC said it will accompany its new “demand billing” scheme, based on a consumers’ highest use of power in any given month, by efforts to diffuse peak demand and control consumption, reducing pressure on both generation and distribution assets.