The island’s lack of a policy to protect against power failures and outages, energy fluctuations, and electricity quality problems that damage equipment is detrimental to business investments and triggers significant losses, Enrique Chávez, sales director for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean of Eaton Corporation’s power quality division.
The executive noted that the island has great potential to leverage other cleaner alternatives and more sustainable energy sources with which it can improve energy efficiency in the industrial and residential sectors, thus generating significant savings and protecting equipment to prevent losses.
“In Puerto Rico, and the rest of the world, power interruptions and failures generate millions in damages for companies and residents, job losses or ‘dead’ periods, and losses from damage to industrial and electrical equipment,” Chávez said.
Ohio-based Eaton Corp. is a diversified power management company with $13.7 billion in sales last year. Among other services, the company develops power protection products focusing on energy efficiency and helping clients protect their investments against power flaws such as frequency deviations, electrical noise, transients, low voltage, high voltage wave distortion or voltage loss.
There are no concrete figures to quantify the monetary expenses that power fluctuations — a real and consistent problem — cause companies and businesses on the island.
However, Chávez said the economic impact resulting from a lack of quality backup power systems is very high, stressing the need for adopting energy protection systems, especially for mission-critical operations such as data centers requiring full-time efficiency levels.
Citing a report by nonprofit organization The Green Grid, Chávez noted that companies — particularly those running data centers — also stand to shave off between 20 percent and 40 percent from their operational costs through the adoption of green technology,
Eaton has been present in Latin America and the Caribbean for more than 50 years, running some 26 manufacturing plants in the region. The company employs about 250 people at its Arecibo, Las Piedras and Coamo manufacturing plants.