China Gives Cuba 20 Solar Farms

China Donates More Than 20 Solar Power Parks to Cuba

The provinces of Villa Clara, Ciego de Avila and Holguin are currently installing three photovoltaic parks donated by China.

The installation of these photovoltaic parks is a significant step towards reducing Cuba’s dependence on fossil fuels and embracing renewable energy sources. It showcases the commitment of both China and Cuba towards a greener and more sustainable future.

The Chinese donation, amounting to over $114 million, comes as part of Cuba’s efforts to change its energy matrix, which currently relies on fossil fuels for 95% of its energy needs.

Starting in 2014, the Cuban government has been implementing an ambitious and million-dollars-worth program to introduce renewable energies, including biomass from sugar cane, wind farms, small hydroelectric plants and solar panels. There are 75 solar parks in the country, providing 254 megawatts of power and saving 110,000 tonnes of fuel per year. This is reported on Feb 23, 2024 by Prensa Latina, a partner of TV BRICS. In addition, 360,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide are no longer emitted into the environment as a result of this clean energy. The installation of the equipment in Holguin is 63 per cent complete and the facility, located in the municipality of Freire, will serve hundreds of homes next March. Crews from the neighbouring provinces of Santiago de Cuba and Guantanamo are working to place 8,480 photovoltaic cells on an area of five hectares.

Previously on September 21, 2023, the Cuban News Agency announced that one installation will take place in Mayarí, a municipality in the province of Holguín.

The photovoltaic park in Mayarí, specifically in the area known as Serones, Guaro district, will have a capacity to generate five megawatts of electricity using sunlight. This contribution is expected to meet 40% of the electricity demand in the Mayari territory and also reduce the emission of greenhouse gases harmful to the ozone layer.

In September last year (2023), the project was in its initial phase, with the study of the land conditions and necessary assurances for the construction and assembly works being carried out. The Chinese donation, amounting to over $114 million, will also facilitate the gradual installation of photovoltaic parks in other Cuban municipalities such as Banes, Sagua de Tánamo, Rafael Freyre, Urbano Noris, Gibara, and the provincial capital.

In addition to the photovoltaic parks, the use of solar panels is being promoted in difficult-to-access communities in Báguano and schools in all 14 municipalities of the province through international solidarity networks from countries like Canada and Luxembourg.

Journalist Emilio Rodríguez Pupo stated that this donation from the Chinese government will assist 10 Cuban provinces, with Holguín being the recipient of the largest number of sites. A total of 22 photovoltaic parks will be installed as part of this donation, which surpasses $114 million.

The increasing use of this form of renewable power generation will allow the gradual substitution of fossil fuels, amid the worsening of Cuba’s economy, hit by the United States blockade and the world energy crisis.