The second in command at PREAA, Deputy Executive Director Juan Carlos Díaz Galarza, will assume the top post on an interim basis, according to La Fortaleza.
“We regret losing a valuable member of our work team,” Gov. Luis Fortuño said.. “We are grateful for his hard work and dedication and wish him future success.”
Bernal was responsible for managing some $130 million in energy grants and other aid that poured into Puerto Rico over the past few years through the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
Under his direction, some 15,133 housing units across Puerto Rico were made more energy efficient, 11,000 solar water heaters were installed in low- and middle-class family homes, some 17,000 energy efficient appliances were purchased, and more than 600 green energy projects were undertaken in business, farming operations, government agencies and nonprofit entities.
Bernal also played an active role in developing the sweeping energy reform the governor passed in 2010, which set hard targets for the development of renewable energy on the island and provided incentives for developers of small and large energy projects.
Bernal thanked the governor for the support and trust placed in him and vowed to continue collaborating from Washington, D.C. on the development of new energy sources in Puerto Rico.