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Chile

Within the framework of the investment program that Acciona Energía is carrying out in Chile, the company has begun the construction of the Almeyda solar plant, the second with photovoltaic technology installed in the Atacama region, mainly to support the electricity supply contract signed with the National Mining Company (ENAMI).

Located in the municipalities of Chañaral and Diego de Almagro, 17 kmfrom the latter, the Almeyda solar plant will have a peak capacity of 62.1 MWp (54.2 MW rated) and an emission-free annual electricity generation capacity estimated at 167.5 GWh, equivalent to the electricity demand of around 80,000 Chilean households.

The photovoltaic plant will be equipped with 187,620 modules (panels) mounted on horizontal tracking structures. It will cover 150 hectares in an area with one of the highest levels of solar radiation in the world, the Atacama Desert. The plant is expected to be completed by the end of 2019.
The Almeyda photovoltaic facility will create 500 jobs in the busiest phase of its construction. Following its entry into service, the new plant will avoid the emission of around 162,000 equivalent tonnes of CO2 from coal-fired power stations every year.

Other plants in Chile

At present, Acciona Energía operates 291 MW in Chile (246 MW in the El Romero photovoltaic plant in the region of Atacama and 45 MW in the Punta Palmeras wind farm in the region of Coquimbo).
The company is currently constructing the 183-MW San Gabriel wind farm in La Araucanía, a region where another 84-MW wind farm will be installed. In 2019, construction work will also start on a new photovoltaic plant –Usya (64 MWp)- in the region of Antofagasta.

This construction effort will take the company’s total capacity in Chile to around 700 MW by 2020, i.e. three wind farms and three photovoltaic plants under its ownership in that country, with a total investment of approximately 833 million euros.

Source: Acciona Energía

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Abengoa has been selected by Compañia Minera Teck Quebrada Blanca S.A., part of the Grupo Teck Mining Inc., to develop the engineering, procurement and construction of seven 220 kV electrical substations for the second phase of the Quebrada Blanca mine in Chile. The project is worth approximately US$ 54 million.

The scope of the project contemplates engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) of seven electrical substations 220/23 kV and 220/6,9 kV for the port, pumping stations and concentrator, part of Quebrada Blanca Phase II, whose main objective is strongly to boost the mine´s copper production and extend the mine´s productive life in more than 30 years. The project also includes the support in all pre-operational tests and the start-up of the previously mentioned facilities.

Obtaining this contract further consolidates Abengoa’s position in large mining sector, where it has been operating for more than 30 years, and where it has developed significant electrical and electromechanical assembly projects.

The multinational corporation OPDEnergy – specializing in the production of energy assets and in the management of all related phases (development, financing, construction, operation and maintenance) – will build 500 MW distributed in various PV projects located in Spain, Chile and Mexico next year. The investment for the aforementioned projects will be of approximately €500 million, financed through the Project Finance Scheme with various financial institutions.

With regards to the projects that OPDEnergy will build in Spain, there are seven PV plants totalling 300 MW of power and they are scheduled to start operating by the end of 2019. These projects are located in: Extremadura, with 50 MW in the La Fernandina solar plant; Andalucia, with 100 MW distributed in two 50 MW plants located in Puerto Real (Cadiz) and Alcala de Guadaira (Seville); and Aragon, with a further 148 MW distributed among the new photovoltaic solar plants in Los Belos (Zaragoza) and Montesol (Teruel) and their respective extensions, which will add a total power of 61 MW in Zaragoza and 87 MW in Teruel.

On the other hand in Chile, in the 2016 public energy tender, OPDEnergy was awarded a 176 GWh/year block of energy, therefore in 2019 and within the framework of this award, the construction of 50 MW will begin. In addition to this, the multinational corporation is currently developing various projects in the Chilean market in the fields of wind, hydro and solar energy.

Apart from the said projects in Spain and Chile, OPDEnergy will start the construction of two PV plants in Mexico with a total capacity of 144 MW in 2019. It is the “Andalucía” solar plant with 107 MW of power and located in the State of Coahuila de Zaragoza and a 37 MW solar plant in the State of Aguascalientes, both projects to be included within the power allocation made by the Mexican government in 2016.

The projects that OPDEnergy has in these three markets (Spain, Mexico and Chile), will allow the multinational corporation to reach a total of 500 MW built throughout 2019. Besides, OPDEnergy is developing various projects in other markets, such as the United States and Italy.

The Spanish firm OPDEnergy has become a key speaker and one of the main international players in the renewable energy sector, thanks to a business model driven by on-going expansion and evolution throughout its 13 years of history. During this period the multinational corporation has invested 1,100 million Euros in projects completed in Spain, Italy and England.

As far as the Spanish market is concerned, it is worth highlighting that OPDEnergy was awarded 200 MW in the most recent tender put out by the Spanish Government, thus becoming the first private equity company -apart from business groups listed on the stock exchange or in the hands of investment funds-, to be awarded more MWs (taking a sixth position in the total allocation ranking).

Recently the multinational corporation launched its new brand “opdenergy” and renewed its corporate image. With the renewal of its identity, the organization intends to strengthen its strategic positioning in the market, “justified by the increase of our international presence, our diversification in new sources of energy and by the growth of our portfolio“, concludes Luis CID, company CEO.

Source: OPDEnergy

A consortium comprising EPC contractor TSK and Rolls-Royce has signed an engineering, procurement and construction (“EPC”) contract with Prime Energía Quickstart Spa, a subsidiary of Prime Energia SpA (“Prime Energía”), for the construction of five power plants across Chile consisting of 265 MTU Onsite Energy 16V 4000 gensets. Prime Energía is a subsidiary of the New York-based Glenfarne Group, LLC (“Glenfarne”), a developer, owner-operator and industrial manager of energy and infrastructure assets. Prime Energía’s five power plants will offer a total combined capacity of 475 MW, which will be connected to Chile’s electricity grid to provide backup capacity to the country’s power supply system.

These power plants are an integral part of Glenfarne’s strategy to develop power infrastructure that supports the proliferation of renewables and the stability of the grid in regions across the Americas with great potential for growth.

The order to deliver the power plants to the first three locations has been officially placed with the consortium, with the order for the two additional plants scheduled to follow shortly thereafter. The gensets will be digitally connected via gateways sending data to the MTU GoManage platform to monitor and analyse system data. The power plants will be remotely monitored and controlled in real time by Prime Energía’s state of the art Network Operations Center in Santiago.

Chile is one of the fastest growing economic powers in Latin America. Demand for energy is expected to grow at an annual rate of 4 per cent over the next 5 years, and the country expects to benefit from the vast availability of renewable power sources. The percentage of renewable energy in the Chilean power mix is growing at a constant rate: its share, in terms of installed generation capacity, has more than tripled since 2012, and in 2017, with a total plant capacity of around 4,300 MW, was approximately 18 per cent. By 2035, no less than 60 per cent of the country’s electricity is expected to be produced from renewable energy, increasing to 70 per cent by 2050. As Chile increases its reliance on weather variable renewable energy sources, there will be an increased requirement for fast-response, cost-competitive backup power sources such as the power plants in Prime Energía’s portfolio to stabilise the electricity grid.

Source: Rolls Royce

Cerro Dominador, a Chilean company owned by investment funds managed by EIG Global Energy Partners (“EIG”), announced today the signing of the financing for its Concentrated Solar Power plant (CSP) located in the Atacama desert, in Chile. This milestone will allow the company to finalize the construction of the first combined CSP and photovoltaic project in Latin America, with a total of 210 MW of capacity. The plant will supply clean, reliable energy to the national interconnected system in Chile, selling most of its power under 15-year power purchase agreements awarded at the end of 2014.

The $758 million financing has been subscribed by a group of international financial institutions and the contribution of local banks. Among the financial entities involved are: Natixis, Deutsche Bank, Société Générale, ABN AMRO, Santander, Commerzbank and BTG Pactual as well as other institutional investors in a tranche parallel to the bank financing. Other participants are expected to join the banking group in the coming weeks.

The Cerro Dominador project is located in Maria Elena, near Calama, in the Antofagasta Region, an area with one of the highest solar radiation in the world. The new plant will produce clean energy, replacing the expected emissions of 640,000 tons of CO2 per year, reaching -as an integrated project- a total of 870,000 tons of CO2 reduction per year.

The new construction phase will have an important contribution in terms of employment for the region, generating more than 1,000 jobs at the peak during the next two years.

Panorámica del campo solar de 330 ha. de la planta fotovoltaica, 2015
Panorámica del campo solar de 330 ha. de la planta fotovoltaica, 2015

The company has been advised throughout the financing process by Milbank, Tweed, Hadley and McCloy (International Counsel), Morales y Besa (Local Counsel), and Astris Finance (Financial Advisor). The completion of the plant construction will be carried out by a consortium formed world leading companies in solar technology. Cerro Dominador is a proud contributor of the Chile Energy Agenda, which has pursued to diversify the country’s matrix by increasing the use of renewable energy.

EIG took its control position and management oversight of the solar project at the end 2016. The first part of the Solar Project, with 62 MW of photovoltaic power started in October 2017, reaching the full 100 MW in February 2018.

Source: Cerro Dominador

Over three years Acciona Energía will build two new photovoltaic plants and two wind farms in Chile, with a total capacity of around 400 MW and an investment of approximately 600 million dollars (around 500 million euros at current exchange rates).

In early 2019 the company will start construction work on the 62 MWp capacity Almeyda photovoltaic plant; it is expected to be completed at the end of the year. Consisting of solar modules with horizontal tracker technology, it will cover 150 hectares in the locality of Diego de Almagro in the region of Atacama.

A few months later, in the third trimester of 2019, Acciona Energía will begin the construction of the 64 MWp Usya photovoltaic plant, with entry into service planned for mid-2020. With solar modules mounted on fixed structures, it will cover 105 hectares in Calama in the region of Antofagasta.

With the energy produced by these two photovoltaic plants, at a total investment of around 150 million dollars (125 million euros), the company will cover its supply commitments taken on in a PPA recently signed with the National Mining Company of Chile (ENAMI).

Acciona is currently constructing in the municipality of Renaico (La Araucanía) the San Gabriel wind farm (183 MW), with an investment of 300 million dollars (around 250 million euros). It is expected to enter service towards the end of 2019 or in early 2020.

Very nearby, the company will also build the Tolpán wind farm, a facility with an initially planned capacity of 87 MW that is still pending exact confirmation. The energy produced there will enable the company to cover supply commitments to regulated customers arising from the capacity awarded to it in energy auctions. The associated investment will be close to 150 million dollars (around 125 million euros).

“We are undertaking major investments over this three-year period, which will considerably strengthen our presence in the thriving renewable energy sector in Chile”, says Acciona Energía CEO, South America José Ignacio Escobar.

Aguas Chañar has awarded Acciona Energía the supply of electricity to its main facilities, consisting of 100% renewable energy generated by the company in Chile.

Under the terms of the PPA contract signed by the companies, supplies will begin on 1 February 2018 for a long-term period, covering over 70% of Aguas Chañar’s needs in the Atacama region for consumption in a number of installations.

This 100% renewable electricity will avoid the emission of 26,500 tonnes of CO2 from thermal power plants per year, based on the energy mix of Chile.

All the energy supplied by Acciona will come from the company’s renewable installations in Chile, where it currently operates a 246 MWp photovoltaic plant (El Romero Solar) in the Atacama Desert and a 45 MW wind farm (Punta Palmeras) in the region of Coquimbo. It is now building a second wind farm with a capacity of 183 MW in the Araucanía Region.

Aguas Chañar, the exclusive integrated water cycle management rights holder in the Atacama region, works in the production and distribution of potable water and the collection, management and disposal of wastewater in the area. It provides a service to more than 270,000 people in nine municipalities in Atacama and operates 13 potable water treatment plants and 9 wastewater treatment facilities.

 “It is a great satisfaction for us to work with Aguas Chañar to supply 100% sustainable electricity supplies without any carbon footprint that are guaranteed by our renewable assets in Chile”, says Acciona Energía General Manager in Chile José Ignacio Escobar. “We are grateful for their trust in us, and that of other large Chilean companies, as this allows us to strengthen our corporate client portfolio in the country”, adds Mr. Escobar.

Aguas Chañar General Manager Claudio Bitran highlights the milestone of being the first company in the potable water production and distribution in Chile to supply more than 70% of its electricity consumption from non-conventional renewable energies. “This agreement ensures that our main processes function with clean energies and that we can take a step forward in caring for the environment by reducing our carbon footprint per liter produced. From now on, we can say that we are not only helping to produce water in the world’s most arid desert but doing it with clean energy, thanks to the endless sunshine in the Atacama region”.

Soltec’s supply record in the country is boosted to 400 MW

Soltec is supplying complete tracker equipment to four solar PV plants located in the outskirts of Copiapó, a city in northern Chile’s Atacama Desert. The power capacity of 46 MW is equally distributed among these plants, being each of them 11.5 MW.

The four PV plants, named Malaquita, Cahiyuyo, Valle Solar Este, and Valle Solar Oeste, are being developed by Yingli Solar, one of the world’s largest panel manufacturers and a main player in the solar industry. Yingli Solar procured 1,576 units of Soltec’s horizontal independent-row tracker SF Utility.

With over 400 MW of solar trackers supplied and underway in Chile and more than 2.2 GW in Latin America, Soltec has proven to be a reliable partner in large-scale projects. Soltec’s strong manufacturing and supply capacity enables customer project success,” said José María Celdrán, Soltec’s Regional General Manager for Argentina, Chile, and Peru.

Due to the nature of this project, with trackers being supplied to four different plants, Soltec’s Solhub played an important role. Solhub is the innovative warehousing and logistics system that supplies unitized tracker components onsite just-in-time with no intermediary handling companies, and minimal additional onsite material handling. The stock inventory and shipping activity of five factory warehouse facilities across the globe are synchronized with regional operations and project schedule to provide reliable lead-times and least onsite handling.

We are thrilled to make our debut for Yingli Solar as a tracker manufacturer and supplier,” stated Raúl Morales, CEO of Soltec. “Customers know that our incomparable PV tracking experience in the Atacama Desert makes Soltec a safe bet on partner reliability.

Source: Soltec

The construction and operation of the El Romero Solar PV plant, developed by Acciona in the Atacama Desert, will contribute 316 million dollars to the GDP of Chile during its life cycle, twice the figure for a standard equivalent coal-fired plant. This conclusion emerges from a socioeconomic impact report on the facility prepared by the company using the methodology of the consultancy EY, and will come into effect once the commercial start-up of the PV plant takes place.

The study reflects Acciona’s interest in knowing about the socioeconomic and environmental footprint of its activities, based on the guidelines contained in its Master Sustainability Plan, whereby it has been carrying out studies on its strategic markets and its most emblematic installations. This is the case of El Romero Solar, the highest-capacity PV plant in Latin America (246 MWp) when it entered service in November 2016.

Based on symmetrical input/output tables (also known as the Leontief model), the study concludes that El Romero Solar will contribute 210 million dollars to the GDP of Chile during its 35-year life cycle, plus 106 million during the construction phase. Of the 316 million, 155 correspond to direct effects of ACCIONA’s activity, 84 to indirect effects in the supply chain, and another 77 are induced in other economic sectors.

This contribution to the country’s GDP represents 59.1 million dollars per gigawatt-hour produced by the plant and 1.27 million for every million dollars invested in the plant.

Employment and the Environment

The study also examines the impact of El Romero in terms of job creation. During the preparation and construction phase (13 months) 2,083 permanent jobs were created (2,291 measured in job-years). Of these, 1,185 were direct, 405 indirect and 493 induced. In the operational phase, 132 permanent jobs will be created over the 35 years of the plant’s working life (4,612 in terms of job-years), of which 73 will be direct, 28 indirect and 31 induced.

Regarding environmental externalities, the report highlights that El Romero Solar avoids the emission of 327,242 tonnes of CO2 per year –taking the thermal energy mix of the Chilean Central Interconnected System (SIC) as the base – i.e. an annual saving of 21 million dollars in costs linked to greenhouse gases. As water is not used in the production process, the solar plant will also save 701,310 m3 a year, equivalent to the consumption of 2,338 Chilean homes. As for polluting gas emissions (SO2 y NOx), El Romero will avoid 2,854 tonnes per year, with an associated saving in healthcare costs of around 4.2 million dollars.

Comparison with coal-fired power stations

The study includes a comparative analysis with an equivalent conventional coal-fired power station, and concludes that the latter contributes around half of El Romero (154 million dollars) to Chile’s GDP during its construction over a working life of 40 years. Of this sum, 69 million will be due to the direct effect, 45 million for the indirect effect and 40 million for the induced effect.
The solar plant also beats coal-fired plants in terms of job creation. The figure of 6,903 job-years (direct, indirect and induced) generated by El Romero over the construction phase and its 35 years’ working life falls to 3,631 job-years in the case of a thermal plant, considering a standard working life of 40 years.

Relating job creation to the energy produced, while El Romero creates 1,291 job-years for each terawatt-hour (TWh) it produces, an equivalent coal-fired plant would generate 966 job-years, i.e. 25% less.

Source: Acciona

Verano Capital, an American project developer based in Santiago, has announced that the 47 MW solar project they initially developed was selected in Chile’s latest energy tender with a winning bid of $25.38/MWh, the lowest 24/7 block price combining solar and wind ever recorded in the history of energy tenders.

The winning bid was offered by a solar project which will be coupled with wind projects to offer 24/7 supply over a 20-year period. Dylan Rudney, CEO of Verano Capital, who originally designed and developed the solar project before partnering with the fund who eventually took the project to bid, expressed his satisfaction with the results of the tender.

It was an extremely competitive tender. Contracts were awarded at an average price of $32.50/MWh, representing a 75% drop from the peak of $130/MWh achieved in the 2013 tenders. These are the lowest renewable energy prices ever seen in a 24/7 energy auction anywhere in the world. The direct beneficiaries will be Chile’s energy consumers, but it also underpins the changing trend in the energy industry, where conventional energy sources are no longer able to compete with increasingly low renewable energy costs.

Verano Capital, whose core business is to offer turnkey development, EPC, O&M and asset management services to investment funds, has ambitious growth plans going forward. Verano is the leader in the PMGD distributed generation market in Chile, with five utility-scale projects in operation and five more coming online in 2017. In addition, the company has over twenty projects seeking equity under development, representing a 150 MW pipeline to be commissioned over the next 18 months.

Verano, which currently has offices in Chile, Argentina and the US, is set to expand to Colombia this year. It also submitted a project totalling 100 MW in Argentina’s upcoming renewable energy tender, whose results are expected this month.

COMEVAL