El Salvador awards 120 MW of solar PV at prices from US$50/MWh

Four PV projects with a combined capacity of 120 MW were awarded in El Salvador’s second renewable energy auction, as reported Wednesday by El Salvador’s National Energy Council (CNE).

The prices for these PV projects oscillated between US$49.55 and $67.24 per megawatt-hour (MWh), much lower than the ceiling price of $113.24 set for this technology in the auction.

Currently, two solar projects at 50 MW each have been awarded to Capella Solar at $49.55 and $49.56/MWh. A 10 MW plant was also won by Sonsonate Energía at a price of $67.24/MWh. The fourth project awarded is a 9.9 MW project by Asocio Ecosolar which is registered at a price of $54.98/MWh.

With these, more PV capacity has been awarded than was originally envisioned, as the auction had a cap of 100 MW for solar PV and 70 MW for wind.

In addition to these PV projects one wind project was also awarded. This is a 50 MW project by Tracia Network at a price of $98.78/MWh. The ceiling price for wind had been set at $105.30/MWh.

In total 169.9 MW of projects were awarded in this auction, which for practical purposes represents the total of 170 MW which was available. It is estimated that the five projects awarded represent an investment of $340 million.

It is expected that the nation’s General Superintendent of Electricity and Telecommunications (SIGET) will review and approve these results by January 24 and sign the associated electricity contracts by March 27 of this year. These will be long-term supply contracts.

The beginning of supply for these PV projects is set for April 1, 2019, and the start date for the wind projects falls in the following year.

62 companies registered to participate in the auction. Before the end of October 29 bids were made, four for wind projects with a capacity of 150 MW and 25 PV projects with a combined capacity of 940 MW. U.S. companies submitted bids for seven of the solar projects, and Spanish companies five.

This is the second renewable energy auction which has been held in El Salvador to date. The first auction in 2014 planned for 100 MW, 50 MW of which was set aside for PV plants and 50 MW to wind. However, only PV projects were awarded, which totaled 94 MW and are expected to enter into operation this year.


Traducido por/translated by Christian Roselund. Para leer el original en Español, por favor lea el sitio del web pv magazine Latinoamérica.