El Salvadorian state power company CEL's project to expand capacity at the Talnique thermo plant to 100MW from 50MW will be ready in March 2009, newspaper La Prensa quoted CEL president Nicolás Salume as saying.
The company operates Talnique through subsidiary Inversiones Energéticas (INE). The plant began operating in January 2007.
The expansion will cost roughly US$50mn and is needed to meet growing demand, in particular during the dry season when thermo plants supply 50% of electricity, the report said.
Power demand in El Salvador in January-November last year rose 3.34% to 4,923GWh compared to the same period of 2006, according to latest statistics from wholesale market administrator Unidad de Transacciones.
In the first 11 months of last year, 2,096GWh of thermo power was injected into the country's grid, followed by hydro (1,610GWh), geothermal (1,171GWh) and imports (32.7GWh).
CEL injected the bulk of power in the 11-month period with 1,610GWh, followed by geothermal firm LaGeo with 1,171GWh, North Carolina-based Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) with 772GWh, Nejapa Power with 888GWh and INE with 318GWh.
In November, maximum demand peaked at 889MW on the 20th.