Solarpack inaugurates 25 MW PV plant in Chile


Spanish solar developer Solarpack has inaugurated its largest solar PV project in Chile – the 25 MW Pozo Almonte Solar development, which is located in Tarapacá, the First Region of Chile.

The project has become the largest solar PV plant to be interconnected to the country’s Northern Interconnected System (SING), and will generate 13% of the annual power required by local mining firm Doña Inés de Collahuasi, which has signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) with the plant.

The project’s inauguration was attended by the Minister of Energy for Chile, Máximo Pacheco; Tarapacá’s Region Superintendent, Mitchel Cartes; Pozo Almonte’s Mayor, José Muñoz; Doña Inés de Collahuasi’s Executive Chairman, Jorge Gómez and Solarpack’s CEO, Pablo Burgos, together with the remaining authorities and guests.

The Pozo Almonte Solar PV farm will mitigate the effects of 50,000 tons of carbon emissions every year, adding 60,000 MWh of clean energy to the local grid. The solar farm is the largest PV plant constructed in Chile by Solarpack, consolidating the developer’s presence in a PV market that is tipped to enter the fast lane in 2015.

"This project is a landmark for our company because it contributes to our development in a social, economical and environmentally sustainable way," said Collahuasi’s executive chairman Jorge Gomez. "This diversification of our energy matrix is part of our company’s energy efficiency program."

Solarpack’s CEO Pablo Burgos remarked that the Pozo Almonte project is an important milestone for the company’s development in Chile, adding: "It represents the consolidation of our business in this country and the materialization of Solarpack’s bet for Chile by the end of 2019. We consider being the first solar plant of such a size to provide energy into Chile’s SING a great success."

Solarpack has thus far developer 69 MW of solar PV projects in Latin America, and this latest project is the company’s second foray into Chile. In 2012 Solarpack completed the Calama Solar 3 plant, which supplies solar power to the Coldelco mine in the north of the country.