APR Energy lines up 25-MW, LPG-fired project in the U.S. Virgin Islands

APR Energy announced Dec. 12 that it has signed a 12-month contract with U.S. Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority (WAPA) to provide 25 MW of power generation using liquid petroleum gas (LPG).

The company noted that the project features a retrofitted GE TM2500+ mobile gas turbine, the first ever to be commercially operated on LPG – a significant milestone that will provide customers access to a cheaper and cleaner-burning alternative to other conventional petroleum-based fuels.

The project is the latest in a string of business wins for APR Energy since being privatized at the beginning of the year, bringing the total of new awards, extensions and expansions in 2016 to more than 1 GW. The project also is the company’s sixth award in the past year using mobile gas turbines.

“This first-of-its-kind project will enable the USVI to leverage its significant investment in LPG infrastructure by greatly reducing the cost and environmental impact of power generation,” said APR Energy Executive Chairman John Campion. “Experts are forecasting a 15-percent increase in the price of diesel fuel during the next two years, while LPG prices are expected to remain stable. Using LPG should provide WAPA with significant savings compared with diesel-powered reciprocating engines, which are common in the Caribbean.”

“The switch to the lower-cost and cleaner-burning LPG as the primary source of fuel in generating electricity in the Virgin Islands has been the single biggest capital project WAPA has undertaken in recent history,” said WAPA Executive Director and CEO Julio Rhymer, Sr. “We are excited about potentially providing lower rates for our customers and are pleased that with today’s contract signing APR Energy will be part of our energy solution in the Virgin Islands.”

Campion expects this project to serve as a model for other utilities looking to benefit quickly from LPG as an alternative, cheaper fuel source. “Interest in LPG is growing in many markets around the world, especially in the Caribbean and parts of Africa and Asia, where availability of the fuel has expanded significantly in the last few years,” Campion said. “The TM2500+ turbine is one of the few fast-track technologies capable of running on LPG, and it offers customers the added flexibility to switch quickly and seamlessly between fuels based on price and availability.”

The new project supplements APR Energy’s existing 25-MW diesel-fuelled turbine plant installed in 2012 for WAPA, bringing its total generation at the site to 50 MW.

APR Energy is a leading provider of fast-track mobile turbine power. Combining state-of-the-art, fuel-efficient technology with industry-leading expertise, its scalable turnkey plants help run cities, countries and industries around the world, in both developed and developing markets.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.