The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Mizraim Belman Guerrero, Communications and Outreach Director,

Federal Agencies Assist Puerto Rico Deploy Aid for Climate Resilient Energy


Federal agencies and Puerto Rico signed an agreement to speed up $12 billion in disaster recovery funds to strengthen Puerto Rico energy infrastructure. The Departments of Energy, Homeland Security and Housing and Urban Development signed a memorandum with Puerto Rico Governor Pedro Pierluisi. The island suffered more than $100 billion in estimated damages when Hurricanes Maria and Irma struck in 2017.

"The agreement supports rebuilding a Puerto Rico that can withstand future storms and other natural disasters," said Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA Network, a religious development organization that works with the island's religious leaders to secure disaster and debt relief. "A modern power grid that meets renewable energy targets and can reduce future risks to the island's economy is critical."

In January, a judge confirmed a settlement that brought Puerto Rico's $72 billion debt to $34 billion. The judge oversees a special bankruptcy process mandated by debt crisis legislation passed by Congress in 2016.

"Puerto Rico's debt deal is based on assumptions that substantial federal aid and disaster relief will continue to reach the island," noted LeCompte.

Read the full DHS MoU here.

Read Jubilee's press release on Puerto Rico's Debt Deal here.

Jubilee USA Network is an interfaith, non-profit alliance of religious, development and advocacy organizations. We are 75 U.S. institutions and more than 750 faith groups working across the United States and around the globe. We address the structural causes of poverty and inequality in our communities and countries around the world.

(202) 783-3566