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HomeNewsLocal newsWAPA Withdraws Contractor Suit

WAPA Withdraws Contractor Suit

The WAPA facility in Christiansted, St. Croix, towers over surrounding buildings as it lets off steam. (Source photo by Linda Morland)
The WAPA facility in Christiansted, St. Croix, towers over surrounding buildings as it lets off steam. (Source photo by Linda Morland)

The Virgin Islands Water And Power Authority has dropped a $19.1 million lawsuit against Florida-based power turbine developer APR Energy.

WAPA withdrew the 2021 suit Tuesday but has the option to refile if needed. It was not clear if a settlement had been reached out of court. Emails to WAPA for comment were not immediately returned.

The suit, originally filed in Virgin Islands District Court and later moved to the Southern District of New York, alleged equipment provided by APR Energy, a subsidiary of a UK-based company of the same name, did not work correctly. The failure forced WAPA to use diesel fuel instead of less-expensive propane and ultimately led to a series of blackouts, according to the suit.

APR countered, saying court filings that WAPA failed to pay the full amount of the monthly rental fees for their leased equipment.

APR had been contracting with WAPA since its acquisition of General Electric’s power rental business in 2013. The company signed contract renewal agreements and expansions with WAPA in 2016 that included plans to retrofit gas turbines to run on lower-cost, cleaner burning liquified petroleum gas.

After the hurricanes of 2017, APR Energy used the Virgin Islands as a case study: “When Hurricane Maria hit the islands in 2017, APR Energy was one of the only power sources on the island that remained online, injecting critical power into the grid. As a reliable supplier, we complement WAPA’s power generation on a consistent basis,” the study concluded.

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