Helping Puerto Rico’s Solar Industry Grow
The Puerto Rican Solar Business Accelerator (PRSBA) is a program to support solar workforce development, finance, and microgrid development in Puerto Rico. Led by The Solar Foundation in partnership with Pathstone Corporation, Inc., it will expand and strengthen the Puerto Rican solar industry and spur the development of a highly qualified workforce.
This program is bringing together businesses, community members, other nonprofit organizations, academic institutions, and solar energy advocates to transform Puerto Rico’s energy system, working together to achieve a renewable and sustainable future.
Puerto Rico’s Energy Public Policy Act, approved in 2019, established a 100% renewable energy goal by 2050. This ambitious target will require unprecedented growth for all renewable energies, but especially solar, the most abundant renewable source in this U.S. territory. To help realize this vision, PathStone and The Solar Foundation, two nonprofit organizations with a strong record of accomplishments in clean energy and workforce development, joined forces to develop the PRSBA.
The program includes the following components:
Solar Workforce Development. The PRSBA will identify the solar industry’s workforce needs under current and future scenarios. We provide on-the-job training and identify gaps between the technical studies curriculum and the industry’s needs. We also offer assistance to individuals interested in joining the solar industry in a technical occupation, such as solar installer or construction worker.
Expanding Finance Options. For the solar industry, having the proper financing options is as important as having the best technology and workforce. For this reason, the PRSBA will assess the current financing scenarios for both solar businesses and their clients. Our aim is to identify and propose new financing options that are more affordable with fewer barriers to entry.
Solar Business Technical Assistance. We provide technical and capital assistance to local solar companies, helping them obtain reconstruction and energy resilience funds allocated to Puerto Rico. We also provide administrative and sales technical support in areas such as permitting and inspection, business plans, PREPA portal orientation, and sales and marketing.
Two Microgrid Pilot Projects. Two Puerto Rico communities will develop microgrid pilot projects with the assistance of our partners from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez campus. The communities will define the projects, actively participate in the design and contractor hiring, and select the model of operation and administration of the microgrids.
The PRSBA is led by The Solar Foundation, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to advancing the use of solar and solar-compatible technologies worldwide; and Pathstone Corporation, Inc., a private, not-for-profit community development and human services organization.
Partner organizations include Oxfam; the University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez; and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). Learn more about our partner organizations.
This new report offers a summary of the financial institutions, mechanisms, and solar companies that offer financing for project development or loans for solar consumers. Based on a survey of the sector and interviews with financial institution representatives, the report identifies current trends, practices, barriers, and unmet needs to investing and financing solar energy and battery storage in Puerto Rico.