Creg: Termoflores to Remain Open

Friday, October 8, 1999

Colombia's 450MW Termoflores thermoelectric plant has withdrawn a closure request with regulator Creg, Creg advisor Luis Arbelaez told BNA. United States power company Illinova owns the plant in a 50:50 partnership with local investors. In the past some plants have requested closure for a year to avoid paying their 50% share of transmission costs, Arbelaez said, speculating that this could have been the case with Termoflores. Illinova operations VP John Prunkl told BNA that the board's policy is not to comment, while plant manager Ricardo Lequerica was not available for comment. Current regulations require generators and consumers to spilt transmission costs down the middle, but from 2001 consumers will start paying 100%, Arbelaez said. Meanwhile, some thermoelectric plants are requesting closure as they are unable to compete with hydro plants that have enjoyed bumper water levels as a consequence of the La Nina weather phenomenon. This is a "temporary oversupply", and rainfall is expected to return to normal levels next year, Arbalaez said. The Chuza and Salvajina hydro plants are at 98% capacity, compared to the 81% national average. The energy surplus has reduced power rates and stymied generation investments, a source from transmission company Isa said, quoted in local newspaper La Republica.

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