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Weather, theft hurt MPC earnings

Published:Wednesday 12:06 AM

Solar panel theft in Jamaica and bad regional weather negatively affected MPC Caribbean Clean Energy during its June second quarter.

The company operates a management firm that takes full or partial ownership in renewable energy power plants in the region.

During the quarter, Paradise Park in Jamaica, one of the solar power plants in its portfolio, suffered from theft. It is an unusual occurrence, industry sources say.

The solar farm, based in Westmoreland, replaced the stolen panels and updated its security protocols.

“The solar park in Jamaica shows a technical underperformance,” MPC said in its quarterly report. “Another operating restriction was due to the theft of panels, whereupon the security concept was adjusted and the stolen solar panels were replaced with the on-site stock.”

The Jamaica operation also suffered from fluctuating voltage from its transformers, which it plans to replace before year end.

Outside of Jamaica, the company suffered from an underperformance at its Central American plants and Dominican Republic assets. The issues related to higher-than-expected maintenance at its wind plant and bad weather impacting its solar assets in general.

In the June quarter, MPC Caribbean earned US$1.49 million before interest tax, depreciation, and amortisation, or EBITDA, up from US$1.15 million in the corresponding period in 2021. The improvement was due in part to the incorporation of new assets in the Dominican Republic.

It has ownership in Paradise Park solar farm in Jamaica, Tilawind wind farm in Costa Rica, San Isidro solar park in El Salvador, and its latest Monte Plata solar park in the Dominican Republic.

During the quarter, the energy generated by MPC’s power assets were roughly 15 per cent less than forecast.

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