Sustainable energy assessment in Puerto Rico’s toll stations using sustainable rating systems
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The present document demonstrates how to use rating systems to analyze Puerto Rico’s toll stations and analyze how they stand up in terms of energy cost effectiveness. It has been known that Puerto Rico’s energy cost per kilowatt is one of the highest within the United States with 25 cents per kilowatt-hour according to National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). Looking to score points in the area of renewable energy source on rating systems is on the best interest on the island, its citizens and the government power distribution agency known as Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority (PREPA). After a detailed evaluation on sustainable rating systems available in the construction industry, INVEST and ENVISION were chosen as adequate for certification based systems on renewable energy provided by the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure and a system provided by the Federal Highway Administration. Using these rating systems the results of the energy assessment was measured in the renewable energy parameters and see how efficient running a solar grid on the infrastructure can be. The results show that the implementation of photovoltaic systems is viable in economic and financial terms. Simulations show that the net present cost of using photovoltaic systems is less than just paying for electricity at its regular cost. Additionally, photovoltaic systems help prevent the production of carbon monoxide. All different study cases showed favorable results while undergoing rating system evaluations.