In the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria in September 2017, Puerto Rico signed Law 17-2019 into effect which requires the island to generate 100% renewable energy by 2050. As one step towards meeting this ambitious goal, the government has established the Puerto Rico Ocean Technology Complex (PROTech) Project based on a feasibility study completed by Integra Design Group, Makai Ocean Engineering, Technical Consulting Group, and Estudios Tecnicos Inc. The FS was updated as a Master Plan for July 2020.
The Puerto Rico Department of Economic Development and Commerce has now published a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) seeking interest in overall project development based on their Master Plan Document. The project developer will be responsible for designing, building, operating, maintaining, and financing the project. Interested parties should visit http://www.ddec.pr.gov/en/protech-rfq/ and complete the Bidder Registration sheet by July 28, 2020. Further information on the process is available in Spanish and English.
A press release is also available here.
“Protech is one of the most important initiatives that we have worked on as an administration. An innovative, eco-friendly development, where nature is the main asset for the development of multiple research, technology, power system and manufacturing projects, among others. As a government, we have a commitment and the challenge of increasing renewable energy production in 60% by 2040. So this project will be key to the generation of energy in the southeast area of the island to comply with some of the public energy policy. We urge to all those companies interested in the development of this innovative project that will be the first of its kind in the Caribbean and the third worldwide, to participate in the RFQ process, whose registration process is available until July 28; and on July 31 is the final term to submit the required documents,” explained Laboy Rivera.
PROTech is envisioned as a multiple use facility on a similar scale to NELHA in Hawaii with Research/Industrial park, OTEC, SWAC, and other facilities. The expected cost of development is 300 million USD. The site selected after the initial feasibility study is 270-acre land parcel near a port in Yabucoa, Puerto Rico.
In addition to the main components, the road map outlays significant development for public access such as walkways, roads, shops, parks, historic site conservation, and beach renovation.
- 500kW net for baseload operation
- working fluid cannot contain CFCs
- Plant must have at least 2 modules to provide power security
- 3250t SWAC System
- 2.2239m3/s flow for aquaculture system
- .0631m3/s flow for critical systems (bypassing OTEC)
- 100m depth mixed discharge pipe (pending study)
- DSW Intake: 5586m length to 1000m depth
- SSW Intake: 2657m length to 10m depth
- Discharge: 3210m to 100m depth
Sources: http://www.ddec.pr.gov/en/protech-rfq/ , https://refuerzoeconomico.com/images/2020-07-06%20PROTECH_Proposed%20Roadmap%20for%20Development_Red.pdf, https://www.ddec.pr.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/2019-07-07-PROTECH_RFQ.pdf as of 7/10/2020
Photos: Courtesy Puerto Rico Department of Economic Development and Commerce