In addition to its famous beaches and nature, Bonaire has another treasure: abundant clean energy sources, sun and wind. At the request of WEB Bonaire, Allied Waters has developed an energy concept for the Island of Bonaire. Key requirements are reliability, sustainability and cost efficiency.
Bonaire’s climate is characterized by strong winds and abundant sunshine throughout the year. Currently around 40% of Bonaire’s total electricity is generated by wind turbines and solar panels. However developing an economically feasible energy system based on renewable energy is not an easy task. Two major factors are (1) bridging wind-free intervals (1-3 day periods during autumn, 10 days per year in total) and (2) utilizing surplus electricity when supply exceeds demand. We have jointly developed the following approach:
- Generation of electricity: wind turbines and solar panels
- Bridging wind-free days: using existing generators fueled by locally produced biodiesel
- Surplus electricity: converting the electric energy into hydrogen energy
As proposed in the concept, hydrogen will be used for transport including cars, trucks and ships (‘sector coupling’). Once this has been fully implemented, the need for fuel imports will dramatically reduce. Then we’re talking 2030. This method of coupling the energy and mobility sector will lead to a reduction in the cost of electricity.
In the coming months WEB Bonaire and Allied Waters will prepare a more detailed plan focusing on realization of the sustainable energy and mobility concept.