Chile: PV projects totaling 503 MW announced


U.S. thin film giant and project developer, First Solar has submitted an environmental impact assessment to Chilean environmental authorities, SEA, for the construction of a 475 MW PV plant.

The Luz del Oro solar park is set to be located near the town of Diego de Almagro, in the Chañaral Province. Construction is slated for February 28, 2017, if approved. A total of $952.3 million will be invested in the project, which will feed generated energy into Chile’s central energy grid (SIC).

Grenergy Renovables, meanwhile, is planning to install 27 MW across three projects in Chile’s O’Higgins and Santiago regions. Subject to approval, the projects will cost around $54 million and construction is expected to start in the second half of next year. The two projects will be located in Marchigue, O’Higgins, while the third will be installed in San Pedro, Melipilla province.

A number of large-scale solar PV projects have been announced recently in Chile, including the 110 MW Quilapilun solar plant by SunEdison and Pattern Energy’s 122 MW Conejo Solar project. SunPower also unveiled plans at the start of August to invest $1.5 billion in the country. It aims to install 1 GW of solar PV there over the next five years.

Last week, Chile’s Center for Renewable Energy released its latest report, documenting 2.09 GW-AC of solar PV projects currently under construction. GTM Research’s Senior Solar Analyst Adam James further estimates that 1.1 GW-DC of PV will be installed in 2015, making it the seventh-largest PV market globally.