Construction one step closer for Peru’s largest PV project to date

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The go-ahead to studies by Energy minister Ísmodes paves way for a capacity surge in Perú (Credit: Peruvian government)

Plans to build a PV plant dwarfing all others seen in Peru so far have made headway after the government green-lighted the launch of preparatory works.

A recent resolution from the country’s Energy Ministry authorises developer Kallpa Generación to carry out feasibility studies for Solar Sunny, a 500MW plant planned in Peru’s arid south-east.

The document, rubberstamped by Energy minister Francisco Ísmodes, determines that the evaluation works at La Joya district (near the city of Arequipa) must conclude within two years.

The studies, the resolution goes on to say, must comply with technical and safety rules, as well as avoid impacts on the environment and Peru’s cultural heritage.

A 345MW PV scene as of late 2018

Should Solar Sunny go ahead with its currently envisaged 500MW size, it would bring about a PV surge to Peru’s embryonic scene.

The country’s current top project – Enel’s 180MW Rubi plant, in operation since last March – helped boost nation-wide PV capacity between 2017 (153MW) and 2018 (345MW), according to IRENA estimates.

The figure places Peru ahead of Argentina’s 191MW or Colombia’s 87MW last year but well short of Mexico’s 2.54GW, Brazil’s 2.29GW and Chile’s 2.13GW.

The government of president Martín Vizcarra, who assumed office last March, is working to deliver climate change legislation passed only one year ago.

As explained by minister Ísmodes last June, the efforts feature an upcoming reform of energy policy. Measures adopted or being considered include block schedules for tenders, the installation of 260,000 solar panels and full rural electrification by 2021.

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