New Hydroelectric Plant in Guatemala

Enel Latin America has started commercial operations at its El Canada Power Plant in western Guatemala. The greenfield hydroelectric plant, Enel’s second project in the country, has a capacity of 43 MW and is expected to contribute 178,000 MWh to the Guatemalan national electricity system each year.

Samala River, Guatemala – December 15, 2003 [SolarAccess.com] Enel Latin America, formerly known as Energia Global International (EGI), is the wholly owned Enel subsidiary dedicated to the development and operation of renewable energy power plants in Central America. With El Canada, Enel Latin America more than triples its installed capacity in Guatemala where it already has the 10 MW Matanzas and 4 MW San Isidro hydroelectric plants, both of which began commercial operation in July, 2002. El Canada is also Guatemala’s first project to participate in the emerging carbon credit market. The project has a long-term contract with the World Bank’s Prototype Carbon Fund for the sale of greenhouse gas emission credits (produced by displacing generation from thermal plants) and is expected to displace an average of 144,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year for 21 years. Enel reported that the El Canada Power Plant, which is located downstream from an existing hydroelectric plant on the Samala River, utilizes some existing infrastructure, thus reducing environmental impact. The company claims that overall, the operation will strengthen Enel’s role as a renewable energy operator in Central America, a market that Enel reported has been growing at a rate of 5 percent to 6 percent per year; and which, once the inter-regional transportation system (MER) is complete, will evolve into a single regional market. Enel acquired its Latin American renewables activities in May 2001. As well as Guatemala, they include 2 hydroelectric plants and one wind farm in Costa Rica with a total capacity of 60 MW, and 2 hydropower plants in Chile with a total capacity of 90 MW. Including projects under development, Enel Latin America counts a total of 210 MW of installed capacity. Enel also owns 12.5 perecent of share in Lageo, a geothermal company in El Salvador, with an installed capacity of 110 MW and a further 40 MW under development.
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