Eaton completes first-of-its-kind clean energy project in Puerto Rico to power manufacturing and support the regional power grid

Published
  • New Eaton microgrid advances reliable, sustainable energy at its Arecibo facility and within the broader community
  • Collaboration with Enel delivers largest clean energy microgrid in Puerto Rico, generating nearly 10 gigawatt-hours of renewable energy annually
  • Eaton drives 45% reduction in energy consumption at Arecibo plant, cuts emissions by 7,100 metric tons annually and reduces costs by nearly 20%

PITTSBURGH--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Intelligent power management company Eaton today cut the ribbon on a significant clean energy project at its Arecibo, Puerto Rico, manufacturing facility where the company makes circuit breakers used in homes, buildings and industrial applications. The size of the clean energy microgrid system deployed by Eaton and Enel North America is a first in Puerto Rico, substantially reducing the facility’s carbon footprint, boosting energy resilience and bolstering community infrastructure. Eaton also implemented efficiency measures using its intelligent power management technologies to reduce its energy footprint.

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Eaton completes first-of-its kind clean energy project in Puerto Rico with Enel North America to strengthen manufacturing with clean, sustainable and resilient power. (Photo: Business Wire)

Eaton completes first-of-its kind clean energy project in Puerto Rico with Enel North America to strengthen manufacturing with clean, sustainable and resilient power. (Photo: Business Wire)

“Communities and businesses everywhere need far more sustainable, resilient and affordable power,” said Mike Yelton, president, Americas Region, Electrical Sector at Eaton. “The projects at our Arecibo manufacturing facility provide a blueprint on how to put the energy transition to work—delivering important benefits for the community and our business. Together, with our longtime project partner Enel North America, we’re demonstrating the important role microgrids play in creating a robust energy infrastructure prepared to address the impact from climate change.”

The first-of-its-kind clean energy project in Puerto Rico demonstrates Eaton’s Everything as a Grid approach to the energy transition that enables flexible energy systems, supporting more resilient, efficient and affordable power. The project will generate more than half of the facility’s energy needs to help reduce emissions, offset energy costs and ensure resilience during grid outage events. The microgrid system incorporates 5 megawatts (MWac) solar PV, approximately 1.1 MW of battery storage and existing onsite generators.

“In our administration, we continue to focus on Puerto Rico’s energy transformation that promotes increased renewable energy generation. I congratulate Eaton for continuing to invest in Puerto Rico and supporting this transformation with the building of a clean energy microgrid that will provide them with energy resiliency, while also reducing their carbon footprint,” said Governor Pedro Pierluisi. “This is the type of project that we are working to see replicated throughout the island.”

Eaton’s focus on sustainability at its Arecibo facility is part of the company’s broad initiative targeting a 50% reduction in carbon emissions across its operations by 2030. In Puerto Rico and around the world, Eaton is implementing energy efficiency measures and optimizing renewable generation to accelerate a low-carbon future.

“Bold action on sustainability is vital, and the stakes couldn’t be higher,” said Harold Jones, chief sustainability officer and executive vice president, Eaton Business System, Eaton. “We have ambitious goals to reduce carbon emissions both within our operations and for our customers. And you can see here in Puerto Rico, we’re finding creative and powerful solutions to make it happen.”

The microgrid is designed to withstand Category 5 strength hurricane-force winds and provides added value in normal grid-connected operations by generating renewable energy that can be consumed, stored and delivered back to the local grid to reduce stress on the island’s utility infrastructure. Eaton and Enel North America are initiating construction of a second microgrid at Eaton’s Las Piedras manufacturing facility to further strengthen energy resilience in Puerto Rico.

“With this project, Eaton is advancing its sustainable manufacturing operations in Arecibo and turns our municipality into one of the leaders on renewable energy in Puerto Rico,” said Carlos Ramírez Irizarry, Mayor of Arecibo.

“As the impacts of climate change worsen, large energy users are stepping up to power their facilities sustainably,” said Matt Barnes, head of distributed energy solutions at Enel North America. “Enel is proud to partner with Eaton in building a future for manufacturing that reaches beyond facility walls to support energy resiliency for the broader community. The urgency to deploy microgrids—especially in regions with vulnerable electrical infrastructure—has never been greater, and Enel is delivering the clean and flexible systems that the energy transition requires.”

Enel North America built, owns and operates the system on behalf of Eaton. Enel North America financed the project under an energy-as-a-service model, shifting Eaton’s investment in the microgrid system from a capital to an operational expense. Eaton provided installation expertise and key technologies for the microgrid system, including its Power Xpert microgrid solutions and leading power distribution equipment.

"Eaton enters into Puerto Rico's electrical transformation as an important player with this milestone. Renewable energy is essential to the democratization of energy in Puerto Rico. Through an affordable, consistent and reliable electrical system, the territory of Puerto Rico positions itself as an attractive destination for doing business. We congratulate Eaton on this great step and thank them for their trust in the island,” said Manuel Cidre, secretary of Puerto Rico’s Department of Economic Development and Commerce (DDEC).

"All of us at LUMA are committed to building a cleaner, more reliable and resilient electric grid. As Puerto Rico's T&D operator and having helped connect over 84,000 customers to net energy metering programs, we are proud to support customers like Eaton and Enel that are championing clean energy and energy efficiency and look forward to many more industrial customers following their lead," shared Juan Saca, LUMA's president and CEO.

Eaton’s Everything as a Grid approach to the energy transition helps customers safely add more renewables and energy storage, transforming operations to become more sustainable and resilient while lowering costs. Learn more about Eaton’s approach to the energy transition.

Eaton is an intelligent power management company dedicated to protecting the environment and improving the quality of life for people everywhere. We make products for the data center, utility, industrial, commercial, machine building, residential, aerospace and mobility markets. We are guided by our commitment to do business right, to operate sustainably and to help our customers manage power ─ today and well into the future. By capitalizing on the global growth trends of electrification and digitalization, we’re accelerating the planet’s transition to renewable energy sources, helping to solve the world’s most urgent power management challenges, and building a more sustainable society for people today and generations to come.

Eaton was founded in 1911 and has been listed on the New York Stock Exchange for more than a century. We reported revenues of $23.2 billion in 2023 and serve customers in more than 160 countries. For more information, visit Eaton.com. Follow us on LinkedIn.

Kristin Somers +1.919.345.3714 Kristincsomers@eaton.com Regina Parundik Cobblestone Communications +1.412.559.1614 Regina@cobblecreative.com

Source: Eaton

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