By Andrea Lopez-Villafaña
The Port of San Diego has secured a grant to install a solar-powered microgrid, which would provide backup power to Port facilities at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal.
The nearly $5 million grant from the California Energy Commission – a state energy and planning agency – is part of a funding agreement that will pay for the project.
The Board of Port Commissioners authorized the grant funding agreement last week, which includes the $4.98 million grant from the agency, $4.42 million in matching funds from the Port and $201,963 in matching funds from UC San Diego.
It is anitipacted that the microgrid will be installed in spring 2020, with a total cost of approximated $9.6 million.
The Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal is a 96-acre complex located west of the community of Barrio Logan that specializes in transporting cargo in separate pieces, refrigerated and dry bulk cargo.
“This is an all-around great project for the community, for the businesses that operate on the terminal and for the Port,” Rafael Castellanos, chairman of the Board of Port Commissioners, said in the release. “It means cleaner air for our neighbors, will provide a reliable safe and resilient power source for terminal and Port operations, and provides significant cost savings.”
According to the Port, the microgrid will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the terminal, and save the Port and estimated $168,000 per year over current utility rates.
TAMT facilities that would benefit from the solar-powered microgrid backup power would include security infrastructure, lights, and offices, according to a Port press release.
The microgrid would also provide backup power for the existing jet fuel storage system, which stands ready to support military deployment activities, as the Port’s role as a Department of Defense Strategic Port, according to the release.