Chile awards EDP Renewables tenders for 323MW of renewable power projects

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EDPR plans to build more than 500MW of renewable power projects in Chile. Credit: EDPR

The Chilean government has awarded Madrid-headquartered renewable power company EDP Renewables (EDPR) tenders to build 323MW of new clean power projects in the coastal northern commune of Taltal.

The company will build the project, a hybrid wind and solar facility, over around 2,850 hectares of land in the region. The project will also include battery storage facilities, and while EDPR did not specify the output or specifications of these facilities, the presence of a storage project means this project will have an impact on both the clean energy mix of Chile, and the resiliency of its electricity grid. PV Tech reached out to EDPR to seek more details on how much of the capacity will be coming from solar PV.

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“The land that EDPR has been awarded for development boasts excellent wind and solar resources, making the Taltal commune an ideal location for creating competitive clean energy projects,” said Enrique Álvarez-Uría, EDPR’s country manager in Chile.

“Moreover, our presence in the Antofagasta region presents an opportunity to grow our footprint in the country, bringing along environmental, social and economic benefits while also addressing the energy needs of the mining sector through decarbonisation.”

EDPR, which first entered the Chilean market in May 2021 with the acquisition of a 628MW solar and wind project, and signed a power purchase agreement for power from its 120MW San Andres wind project four months later, now boasts more than 500WM of renewable power across its pipeline and portfolio in Chile.

While EDPR did not specify how much of the capacity of the upcoming project would be derived from solar and wind separately, the continued investment in Chilean solar by foreign energy companies is an encouraging sign for the future of the Chilean energy mix. While much of the country’s energy comes from oil, Chilean renewable capacity has increased considerably in recent years, with the country’s use of solar power increasing from less than 0.01TWh in 2012 to 37.69TWh last year.

The growth of solar is also encouraging compared to other power sources. Between 2012 and 2022, the contribution of coal to the country’s energy mix fell from 78.1TWh to 61.17TWh, and the rate of new solar installations has outpaced that of new wind power projects. The contribution of wind to the Chilean energy mix has increased from 0.93TWh to 24.42TWh over the same period.

The news follows EDPR’s signing of a solar module supply deal with US manufacturer First Solar, as the company looks to strengthen all aspects of its solar supply chain.

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