Ecuador thermo-hydro power gap set to widen

By
Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Three thermoelectric projects totaling 396MW in capacity are slated to come online in Ecuador this year, according to the latest BNamericas Electric Power Stats report.

In the same period Ecuador expects to add six hydro projects totaling 72.2MW.

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Should these projects come online as scheduled, Ecuador will further widen the gap between its thermo and hydro power capacity which currently stands at 2,617MW of effective thermo capacity and 2,243MW of effective hydro capacity.

By doing so Ecuador maintains its place among Latin America nations that rely more heavily on expensive thermo generation than cheaper hydro generation. Fellow thermo-reliant nations include Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela, according to the report.

In contrast, nations like Brazil and Colombia generate more than half of their electricity from hydro power.

This year, however, Ecuador is also expected to add six new photovoltaic solar projects totaling 73MW and a 10.7MW biomass plant to its energy matrix, according to the report.

Should Ecuador's renewable energy growth continue to outpace new hydro capacity, the nation may break from the regional trend of thermo or hydro and forge a new path with renewable energy.

Click here to see the full report.