Solar brings down power tariff in El Salvador

El Salvador’s watchdog Siget has announced in a press release published on its twitter account that the tariff of electricity will be reduced by 3.09% in the quarter from July 15 to October 15.

The authority said that the average price for electricity in this period will be of $118.9/MWh. Siget explained that the price drop was mainly due to a series of factors such as an increase of 22.9% of power production from hydro sources, the connection to the grid of a 60 MW solar power plant in April, and a slight decrease in the international price for bunker fuel, which is used in the country for thermal power generation. This plant, Siget added, is currently covering 1.9% of total power demand.

The solar plant mentioned by the regulator is the second phase of the Providencia Solar PV plant built and operated by French independent power producer Neoen in the Department of La Paz, close to San Salvador, the country’s capital city.

The second section of the project, which is the largest PV installation inthe Central American nation, consists of the Antares facility, which was selected in a recent energy auction and connected to the grid in early April, and the 25 MW Spica section, which is now providing local power distributor DelSur with electricity.

The new unit is is selling power to the national grid at a price of $0.1019/kWh. According to the Consejo Nacional de Energía (CNE), this price is 18% lower than the average price for power of $0.1236/kWh registered during the first quarter of this year.

Neoen was awarded the largest volume of capacity in the renewable energy auction held by the local government in 2014. Overall, the CNE allocated 94 MW of solar in the auction.

Neoen also won a PPA for 136 MW of solar in the country’s second auction for renewable energy, which was held in March of this year. This plant will sell power to the national grid at a price lower than $50/MWh.