Work on another major solar power project in Chile has started, this one by US-based Pattern Energy.
The California-based renewable energy project developer announced that it has started construction of a 122 MW solar PV power plant in Chile, initiating work on the project after securing debt financing worth $205 million. The project is located in the Atacama desert, 30 kilometres east of the city of Taltal, and Pattern Energy has signed a 22-year power purchase agreement with Minera Los Pelambres for the sale of electricity generated from the project. The power plant is expected to be commissioned next year.
Several international project developers have been attracted to Chile’s rapidly emerging solar power market recently, with the most recent being SunPower, who announced plans to set up 1 GW solar power capacity in the country over the next 5 years.
Earlier this year, EDF Energies Nouvelles and Marubeni announced that they would jointly develop a 146 solar PV power project in the country which is expected to be one of the largest merchant solar power plants in the world. Greenwood Energy and Pacific Solar S.A., too, announced an 80 MW merchant solar power project in the country.
SolarReserve has aggressive plans to set up large-scale hybrid solar power projects. The company is working on two concentrated solar power projects of 120 MW installed capacity, and a 150 MW solar PV project; all 3 projects will be part of a single power plant complex. The CSP projects will also have provision of storage.
Chile has set a target to generate 20% of the country’s electricity from renewable energy sources by 2025.