United States: U.S. Virgin Islands

A graphic depicting the USVI goal of reducing fossil fuel 60% by 2025. The graphic is basically a rectangle shape, except the right edge of the rectangle is longer, so it is not a perfect rectangle. A white line dissects the graphic from the top left corner to slightly past the halfway point of the right edge of the graphic. This line creates two wedges within the rectangular shape. On the bottom is a wedge depicts a 60 percent reduction in fossil fuel use from 2010 to 2025. Within that wedge, there are 3 black oil barrels that become progressively smaller from left to right, following the angle of the wedge, to show a reduction over time. The top wedge contains four white  icons (a water drop, a CFL bulb, a photovoltaic panel and a wind turbine) that become progressively larger from left to right to illustrate that over that same 15-year period, energy efficiency and renewable energy will increase to help meet the 60 percent goal.

To reduce their total dependence on fossil fuel 60% within 15 years, the U.S. Virgin Islands will take steps to increase energy efficiency and deploy renewable energy technologies.

The United States of America's U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) pilot project is charting the course toward a secure, sustainable, clean energy future for the USVI and the Caribbean.

Through energy efficiency improvements and renewable energy development, this Energy Development in Island Nations (EDIN) project will drive the transition to a clean energy economy and support the USVI's goal of a 60% reduction in fossil fuel-based energy consumption by 2025.

By harnessing the USVI's natural resources and the ingenuity of its people, the EDIN/USVI pilot project aims to:

  • Increase the affordability and reliability of energy throughout the territory
  • Build a thriving clean energy sector that generates green jobs
  • Preserve the natural beauty that is the lifeblood of the islands.

The USVI Energy Challenge

Currently, the USVI residential islands, comprising St. Croix, St. John, St. Thomas, and Water Island, are 100% dependent on fossil fuels for electricity and transportation.

This total reliance on oil leaves the territory vulnerable to fluctuating global oil prices that can have devastating economic effects for individuals and businesses alike. With USVI energy costs running nearly three times the national average, energy price spikes are next to impossible for ratepayers to absorb.

And as an island community, the USVI is among the first to feel the impact of the environmental threats associated with fossil fuel-based energy sources—rising sea levels, intense hurricanes, and widespread loss of coral reefs.

The USVI pilot will build upon the experience the United States has gained through its participation in the Hawai'i Clean Energy Initiative (HCEI). As with HCEI, the EDIN/USVI project will follow a road map developed by project working groups to achieve specific and measurable energy efficiency and renewable energy targets. View an overview brochure of the EDIN-USVI road map.

There is no silver bullet. To achieve its clean energy goals, the USVI will need to deploy a variety of clean energy technologies. Studies are under way to identify the most cost-effective and environmentally sound solutions for the USVI. Among the options being considered are solar and wind power, waste-to-energy, transportation system and fuel efficiency improvements, an undersea cable linking the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico power grids, and more. Read a technical report on the economic and technical feasibility of integrating renewable energy technologies into the U.S. Virgin Islands transmission and distribution systems. Read a feasibility study on the proposed undersea cable on the Virgin Island Water and Power Authority's website.

To support the U.S. territory's commitment to fundamentally changing the way it uses energy, EDIN will leverage the resources of the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to overcome policy, financing, and technical barriers and implement clean energy technology solutions.

Energy Innovation in Action

The EDIN-USVI Clean Energy Quarterly is an e-mail newsletter that highlights recent news and events about the EDIN-USVI pilot project. Subscribe to follow the progress of the EDIN-USVI effort. View archives of previous issues.

Check out the USVI Energy Events Calendar to find out about upcoming energy-related trainings, workshops, and other events in the territory.

View presentations from EDIN-USVI Clean Energy Workshops presented by DOE and NREL.

Watch a video on the various efforts and projects that are contributing to the USVI's energy revolution. Read a case study of one such project and learn how it has benefitted the Virgin Islands Environmental Resource Station.

Learn more about the renewable energy progress, policies, and goals of the United States of America.