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Not Just Tourists: Now Also Cars Recharge Under the Sun of Punta Cana

The Caribbean's first 'electrolinera' in the Dominican Republic exemplifies the private sector's commitment to the energy transition in a country aiming to significantly increase renewable generation in the coming years.

Estación de recarga eléctrica en Punta Cana

 

One of the most sought-after Caribbean destinations is now also a pioneering environment for clean energy in the Caribbean and Latin America, showcasing what happens when the private sector, governments, and development banks work towards a common goal.

Just as tourists come to these white sands and crystal-clear waters to recharge their batteries, electric vehicles can do so at the new Evergo Connect station, sometimes in just 10 minutes!

We visited this electric filling station with its 29 ultra-fast chargers of up to 225 kW in early March, as part of the IDB and IDB Invest’s Annual Meetings activities.

Beyond the creative name—a portmanteau of the Spanish electricidad and gasolinera (electricity and gas station)—the ‘electrolinera' offers a rest and gastronomy area, a small convenience store, a playground, workspaces and private rooms, and other activities for drivers and families to choose from while charging their vehicles.

 

 

Evergo Connect also features a micro-mobility space for charging electric motors and bicycles. It is the first station with "battery swapping" solutions available for vehicles equipped with such technology.

The initiative is led by the Interenergy Group through an alliance between its companies, Evergo and Consorcio Energético Punta Cana Macao (CEPM).

The experience of this first 'electro-station' in the region will serve as a pilot project for the future expansions of the network to other locations in the Dominican Republic and the rest of the Caribbean and Latin America.

With an investment of $40 million, IDB Invest with the participation of Bank of America, supported CEPM and the Interenergy Group’s green investment program, including the above-mentioned electro-station, a solar photovoltaic park with energy storage, and the electrification of the Saona Island through renewable energy.

From IDB Invest, our purpose with projects of this kind is to combat the effects of climate change. One option to achieve this is for the automotive fleet to evolve towards the adoption of electric vehicles.

This investment and others that we are making in different countries of the region aim at that objective, which is also one of the strategic priorities of the IDB Group for the coming years.

 

Let there be light in paradise.

 

One of the aspects that excite us most about this project is that it included the electrification of the Saona Island, a dreamlike place facing the Cotubanamá National Park, which receives up to one million tourists every year.

Despite its attractions and economic importance, its 600 inhabitants had no electricity to efficient sources of energy relying on diesel generators and cooking with wood; activities that had undesirable effects on the environment.

CEPM and its subsidiary, Compañía Eléctrica de Bayahíbe (CEB), installed a micro-grid utility project primarily powered by solar energy, including battery solutions that allow solar energy storage and ensure a permanent electrical supply to significantly improve the quality of life of all islanders and visitors.

 

 

This project is one example of how the IDB Group decisively supports the Dominican Republic's goal of increasing the share of renewable energy in their matrix while ensuring the country's energy security.

Likewise, these projects aim to support CEPM's commendable goal of becoming the country's first energy company and carbon neutral in less than a decade.

IDB Invest is currently working on similar initiatives in other jurisdictions of Latin America and the Caribbean to promote further investments that will contribute to transform the energy matrix with a higher penetration of renewable energies.

Priorities vary in each country. For example, in Belize, we are doing something similar, and in Peru IDB Invest has a project aiming to bring clean energy solutions to people living in the Amazon area.

The IDB Group thus reinforces its commitment to promoting renewable energies, supporting solutions to ensure access to clean energy, addressing the consequences of climate change, and demonstrating that when governments, development banks, and the private sector work together, they can achieve significant advances.

Authors

Omar Zacarías

Omar holds the position of Investment Officer at IDB Invest, as part of the institutions Infrastructure and Energy Division working on investment proj

Marco Monje

Marco is a Senior Investment Officer within the Infrastructure & Energy Division with over 15 years of professional experience. Marco has participated

Energy

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