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Enel Starts Construction On Latin America’s Largest Solar Plant

Enel Green Power has started construction on the 292 MW Nova Olinda solar power plant in Brazil, Latin America’s largest solar plant.

The 292 MW Nova Olinda solar plant is being constructed by Enel Green Power’s Brazilian subsidiary, Enel Green Power Brasil. The company is already responsible for the country’s largest solar plant — the measly 11 MW Fontes Solar, and is also responsible for the construction of what will be the second largest solar project in Brazil, the 254 MW Ituverava solar power plant.

Nova Olinda is owned by four special purpose vehicles all under Enel Green Power Brasil, and is being constructed in Ribeira do Piauí in Brazil’s north-eastern state of Piauí. Nova Olinda is expected to be completed in the second half of 2017, will cover an area of 690 hectares, and will generate more than 600 GWh of clean electricity each year, enough to meet the annual needs of approximately 300,000 Brazilian households. The solar plant will also avoid greenhouse gas emissions worth 350,000 tonnes of CO2-equivalent.

“The start of construction of Nova Olinda is another step forward for our Group in Brazil, confirming our leadership in the country’s solar market,” said Carlo Zorzoli, Enel’s Country Manager for Brazil. “The Brazilian government has developed an attractive and well-structured auction process, and our success in the country has been built upon our market-leading technology, our excellent financing, and a reputation for sustainable stakeholder engagement. We look forward to continuing to invest in order to grow strongly in the country’s energy sector.”

Enel Green Power was awarded the contract back in late August of 2015, as part of Brazil’s landmark Leilão de Reserva public solar tender. The company walked away with 553 MW of solar projects awarded to them, including the 103 MW Horizonte MP and 158 MW Lapa projects. Enel Green Power confirmed it would be investing $600 million into the three projects, with $300 million going to Nova Olinda.

Enel Green Power is one of the leading players in Latin America, a position confirmed earlier this year when it was awarded nearly 1 GW in Mexico’s first ever power auction. The company was awarded the rights to develop Villanueva and Villanueva 3 in the State of Coahuila, in the north of Mexico, with a combined installed capacity of 754 MW, and the 238 MW Don José PV solar project, slated for development in the State of Guanajuato.

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