Ya, mon! Solar and hydrogen power are coming to the Cayman Islands. Just 500 miles from Miami, the first solar-hydrogen home in the Caribbean is being built that will be carbon neutral and self-sustaining.
Renewable Energy International (REI) along with Mike Strizki who built the first solar-hydrogen home in New Jersey, will be undertaking this Cayman project. The 3,000 sq. ft. residence on the Grand Cayman Island will take advantage of the island’s 354 sunny days per year to generate electricity from solar and store the excess energy as hydrogen.
The system will electrolyze water to create hydrogen and store it for use at night and during hurricanes, by which it will run the hydrogen through a fuel cell to generate electricity for the home. One has to wonder, however, why the Caribbean’s most prolific hurricane target was chosen for this project, though?
In 2004, Hurricane Ivan crunched 70-percent of buildings on Grand Cayman and if Al Gore’s predictions have any merit, there will be many more tropical cyclones to follow. Perhaps adding a wind turbine or two would also be a bright idea for this windblown island.
When Chris Columbus discovered the Cayman Islands in 1503 he called them “Las Tortugas” after the many turtles found there. Who would have imagined, however, that this tortoise would really be a hare when it comes to leading edge energy technology?