Medtronic unveils 17-acre solar panel project in Juncos
Medtronic Puerto Rico, a medical technology, services, and solutions company, unveiled Tuesday a 17-acre area comprising 18,000 photovoltaic cells at its plant in Juncos, in the presence of company and government officials.
“At Medtronic Puerto Rico, we recognize the critical interdependence between human health and the environment and our inherent responsibility for the welfare of our employees,” said Félix M. Negrón, vice president of Medtronic Puerto Rico.
“Our well-being ultimately depends on the health and resources of the planet. That’s why we continually strive to reduce our environmental impact,” he added.
The solar energy system will supply an approximate 7.5-megawatt-per-hour annual load to the plant.
“It covers an approximate 40 pecent of annual electricity consumption with a maximum power output that coincides with our peak load demand,” stated David Olivera, Medtronic Puerto Rico technical services director.
The system will also attain dramatic carbon footprint reduction: 5.16M tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) reduction per year, company officials said.
During the construction, approximately 145 jobs were created.
The photovoltaic project also received the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s final inspection and endorsement for commercial distribution, and Medtronic Puerto Rico signed a new interconnection agreement and net metering contract, company officials further noted.
“We decided to use a Power Purchase Agreement, which is a financial model where we agree to purchase all the electrical energy produced by the solar PV system operator for a predetermined price and duration,” Olivera explained.
The system is another step in the company’s commitment to continually strive to reduce the environmental impact of its operations in Puerto Rico to zero, Negrón said.
“This project provides the perfect balance to reduce the environmental impact by using renewable sources of energy while providing a financial positive impact that helps the sustainability of the operations in Puerto Rico,” he added.
The opening event was attended by government officials, including Alfredo Alejandro Carrión, Mayor of Juncos; José L. Dalmau, Senator for the Humacao District; and Melba López, business development officer of the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Company. Peter Walsh, VP of Global Operations at Medtronic Inc.; Roy Anderson, VP of Global Operations Finance at Medtronic Inc.; and Eduardo Rivera Galguera, program manager, were also among those present.