The solar farm, one of seven projects hoping to be completed in the coming months, produces 1,500 megawatts (MW) of energy generating enough electricity to power 780 different homes. With over 14,000 new panels in addition to the 9,000 panels already in use, officials see solar power as the key to a renewable future as well as long term sustainability and development.
"For us this is the future," said Ovel Concepcion, a director with Hidroenergia, the state-run company tasked with building the solar park 190 miles (300 kilometers) east of Havana in the central province of Cienfuegos.
"This is just like having an oil well," he told The Associated Press on a recent tour of the facility.
Experts say that between April and July, the Cienfuegos plant, known as Cantarrana, saved the island some 145 tons of fossil fuel and avoided the emission of 380 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Other solar farms are currently in the process of construction in the provinces of La Habana, Guantanamo, Camagüey, Santiago de Cuba and Isla de la Juventud.
Cuba also has three experimental wind farms in Gibara, Isla Turiguano, and Los Canarreos with a total of 20 wind turbines generating electricity to small scale hospitals and rural schools that do not have access to the main power grid.
According to a government report from May, the island hopes to get 10 percent of its electricity from renewables by 2030.
Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2013-08-cuba-solar-farm-renewables.html#jCp