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Chile watch: Geothermal financing, reservoir levels, transmission projects

Bnamericas Published: Monday, June 06, 2016
Chile watch: Geothermal financing, reservoir levels, transmission projects

Enel solicited US$30mn in financing from multilateral IIC for the US$320mn, 48MW Cerro Pabellón geothermal project in Chile, an IIC disclosure shows.

Subsidiary Enel Green Power is developing the project with Chile's national oil company Enap.

Ormat Technologies won the EPC contract in 2015 to build Cerro Pabellón, which is backed by a 20-year PPA with fellow Enel subsidiary Endesa Chile and is expected to enter operation in the first half of 2017.

The project also includes an 80km transmission line that will feed into Chile's northern SING power grid.

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Chile's power generation-only water reservoirs were 51.7% full as of end-May.

Water levels were below average historically, but up 15.7% year-on-year, according to the latest monthly report from national water authority DGA.

Dual-purpose reservoirs used for power generation and potable water were 23.3% full, up 7.1% on a year ago.

Hydropower supplied 34.4% of generation on the central SIC grid in April, up from 32.5% in April 2015, according to data from system operator CDEC-SIC.

CDEC-SIC has forecast water levels in line with historical averages for the hydrological year that began in April.

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Environmental authorities in Chile's Atacama region (III) will review on Wednesday the environmental impact assessment for a US$6mn transmission project.

Works involve modifying a section of the 610km, 500kV SING-SIC interconnection project under development by Transmisora Eléctrica del Norte, a 50:50 JV between France's Engie and Spain's Red Eléctrica.

In related news, transmission firm Eletrans filed an environmental impact study with authorities for a US$77mn, 2x220kV transmission line that will stretch from the Santiago metropolitan region to neighboring O'Higgins region (VII).

The project is in line with a government mandate to expand the congested trunk line system of the SIC, which supplies most of Chile's residential power demand.

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