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Richard Branson’s private island transitions to renewable energy

Necker Island in the Caribbean, owned by Sir Richard Branson, will shift to 75% renewable energy by the end of 2015.



There are many benefits to owning your own private island, one of them however is not the amount of money you have to spend on providing power to your little slice of heaven. Branson has inked a deal with NRG Energy to build a system that manages solar, wind diesel power on the 74-acre island.

“People no matter what socioeconomic level are paying 40 to 55 cents a kilowatt hour as opposed to in the U.S., six cents to 20 cents,” NRG Energy chief executive David Crane said. “It’s relatively easy with renewable-driven solutions to save people money because they’re paying so much.”

Branson had said that by switching to renewable energy will cut down his electricity bill by 40%. However because it is still very expensive to store wind and solar energy in batteries, the island will not become a 100% renewable just yet.

He did say that if technology advanced to the point where it would be financially feasible to switch over to 100% renewable, he would definitely transition into relying solely on solar and wind power.

The project is part of the Ten Island Renewable Challenge, in which Caribbean islands will attempt to end their reliance on fossil fuels.

Branson hopes a commitment to renewable energy in the Caribbean Islands will encourage the world’s largest countries to better embrace renewable energy.

“I think it’s important that island states get their own fuel and can turn to bigger countries and say, ‘Please do something, because we love our islands; we don’t want to see our reefs destroyed or water levels rising,’ ” Branson said. “It could be a tremendous benefit to Caribbean economies, and it can save a lot of individuals quite a lot of money.”

The remote island can be booked for vacations by visitors. Google chief executive Larry Page was married on the island last summer.

Take a look at the island in the video below



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