On 28 August, construction started on the Kelar 517 MW capacity, combined-cycle plant located in Mejillones, Chile. It represents an investment of approximately 600 m USD and is expected to start operation in October 2016. The Ministry of Energy is optimistic about this investment as it sees energy as the one of the most attractive sectors for foreign investors in the country.
The plant will form part of the Norte Grande Interconnected System (SING) that in turn will connect with the Central Interconnected System (SIC) so that any surplus energy produced by the former will be supplied to the latter.
It forms part of the framework objectives of the Energy Agenda established by the Chilean Government and represents the arrival of a new participant in the power generation sector, a fact that will raise the level of competency. Furthermore the plant will operate on natural gas, whose use in the energy matrix is aimed to be increased, replacing the more expensive and polluting diesel.
This liquefied natural gas (LNG) will be supplied by Gas Natural Fenosa, as part of its global strategy and will include the Sabine Pass project owned by Cheniere Energy that is under construction in the USA.