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Latin America Report: A $2 Billion Solar Plan for Chile

Ingenostrum is branching out beyond its traditional stronghold of Spain and Italy and into the emerging market of Chile as its looks to expand its portfolio in solar, wind and biomass.

According to the Latin America Herald Tribune, the company based in Seville, Spain, aims to build six solar plants worth nearly $2 billion in the Antofagasta region of northern Chile. The plants would total 688 MW, and the largest would be a 160-MW project in the Sierra Gorda section of the city. The company’s environmental impact statements are due to be reviewed by June 28, the Environmental Review Service said.

Ingenostrum has also indicated interest in building wind farms in the Coquimbo region and biomass plants in the southern part of the country.

Chile continues to garner international attention as major players look to the region because of its growing energy needs and its enormous renewable potential. The Antofagasta region is also being explored by Italian utility giant Enel for its geothermal potential.


IN THE NEWS

Brazil’s Smart Grid Investment: Northeast Group has released a study, Brazil Smart Grid: Market Forecast 2012-2022, stating that smart grid investments in Brazil are set to reach US$36.6 billion by 2022.

Acciona Enters Brazil Wind Market: Acciona Windpower has won a contract to supply, install and maintain 3-MW turbines used for a 120-MW wind farm in Rio Grande do Sul state. Acciona also plans to add its first manufacturing plant in Brazil.

Chile’s Hydro Expansion: Australia’s Origin Energy has increased its pipeline of global hydro-electric projects to nearly $10 billion after buying a majority stake in a $3 billion hydro project in Chile.


LOOKING AHEAD

Chile’s Uncertain Renewable Energy Future: Renewables — solar in particular — feature heavily in the debate over how Chile's power section can keep pace with demand.

Brazil Prepares for PV World Cup: Solar will play a starring role at the 2014 football World Cup, which Brazil aims to make the most sustainable tournament in the event's history.

Honduras Wind Farm to Expand: Honduras state power company Enee and Mesoamerica signed an agreement to increase capacity of Mesoamerica’s 102 MW Cerro de Hula wind power plant by 25 MW.


CPV IN LATIN AMERICA

In CPV’s ‘Sweet Spot:’ With technology tailor made for its intense solar climate, the young concentrated photovoltaics industry positions itself for growth in the Latin America market.

Mega CPV Project in Mexico: Mexico hardly registers as a must-tackle solar market, yet it may well be where concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) technology will bloom. SolFocus said Thursday it's clinched a deal to supply its CPV equipment to a project that will be built in 50-megawatt phases and is planned to eventually reach 450 megawatts.


EMERGING WIND MARKET

Growing Capacity

In emerging markets, GWEC observes a strong increase in wind power utilization in Brazil and Mexico. GWEC quantifies Latin America’s good year at new installed capacity of 1.2 GW, led by Brazil. Adding 587 MW, the nation’s installations were up by 50 percent over 2010, bringing it to a total of just over 1.5 GW.

“Brazil has a pipeline of more than 7 GW to be completed before the end of 2016,” said Pedro Perrelli, executive director of the Brazilian Wind Energy Association. “The Brazilian wind sector has attracted significant investment, facilitated by the policies of the Brazilian National Sustainable Development Bank (BNDES).”


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