On April 14, 2023, the Virgin Islands Energy Office announced plans to utilize their $2.6 million expanded State Energy Program funds under the Infrastructure, Investment, and Jobs Act (IIJA) to provide more communities with access to residential battery storage, electric vehicle affordability and maintenance, and energy sector workforce development. This significant increase in their annual SEP formula budget will help expand project potential for the Territory Energy Office. Some of the funds will specifically be used to provide incentives related to home battery system installation and electric vehicle (EV) purchases. The Virgin Islands is well positioned for EV build out due to available solar energy and simplified charging needs and the EV incentives will help mitigate some of the supply chain challenges with importing vehicles from the mainland United States. There will also be funds available to support training and specialized equipment procurement to establish local EV services and repairs. Additional funds will be funneled towards improving access to distributed energy storage at the residential level through an innovative pilot program that which will help reduce the risk of frequent power outages.
For more information on how these programs will be rolled out and the Virgin Islands Energy Office, visit their website here.