The Sonnedix Oriana 57.7 MW solar PV plant has been recognized by the Puerto Rico Builders Association (PRBA) as the “Work of Industrial Impact of the Year” due to its resilience in the face of Hurricane Maria in 2017. Emilio Colón-Zavala, PRBA President, presented the award to Leslie Hufstetler, Sonnedix’s VP, Business Development and Puerto Rico Director, at the annual convention on September 20, 2018.
Operational since late 2016, the Oriana solar PV plant meets the annual electricity needs of more than 12,000 homes and offsets operational since late 2016, the Oriana solar PV plant meets the annual electricity needs of more than 12,000 homes and offsets 77,000 US tons (over 69,000 metric tons) of carbon dioxide emissions per year — the equivalent of the carbon sequestered by 81,000 acres of US forests.
Drawing on Sonnedix’s experience gained in the design and construction of its other plants in Puerto Rico, the Oriana solar plant took only nine months to build and fully adheres to the strict Minimum Technical Requirements of the Puerto Rico utility.
At the peak of Oriana’s construction phase, Sonnedix employed 1,100 local residents, all of whom had been recruited through a joint effort with government employment offices in the area. In addition to providing local jobs, the project also creates a sense of pride and ownership in the communities. Sonnedix continues to work proactively in the community through its environmental mitigation efforts, which have included planting 3,800 trees at the Pastillo Natural Reserve in Isabela.
The Oriana solar plant, the second largest solar PV plant in the Caribbean, consists of over 180,000 ground mounted solar modules and is built on two sites, each covering about 100 acres. The northern site is composed of a base layer of limestone rock, a challenging environment on which to lay the foundation for the platform, and the southern site is hilly, where Sonnedix opted to build the platform along the natural contours of the terrain.
“We’re proud to see the Sonnedix Oriana solar PV plant recognized by the PRBA, for the quality of the plant’s construction and its ability to provide renewable energy to meet the island’s power demands in the mst challenging of circumstances” said Leslie Hufstetler, Sonnedix’s VP, Business Development and Puerto Rico Director. “The PRBA award is also testament to Sonnedix’s commitment to working responsibly to have a positive impact on the communities where we operate.”
About the Puerto Rico Builders Association
The Puerto Rico Builders Association is a private, non-profit organization established in 1951. Its purpose is to represent leading developers and investors in housing, commercial, industrial and tourism projects. The Association also represents investors, suppliers, Banks, professionals, and enterprises related to development and construction in Puerto Rico. Its objective is to promote and lead planned, safe and sustainable development, to serve as an economic engine on the Island, in collaboration with the private and public sectors of Puerto Rico.