Over the next few years, thanks to Enel Green Power’s commitment, hundreds of thousands of Brazilian households will benefit from emission-free energy. The Enel group company won the Leilão de Reserva public tender, earning it the right to sign 20-year energy supply contracts for a total of 553 MW, for the three new PV projects Horizonte MP (103 MW), Lapa (158 MW) and Nova Olinda (292 MW). The plants, which will be built in areas with high levels of solar radiation, will annually generate about 1.2 TWh of renewable energy, making a significant contribution to meeting Brazil’s energy needs.
Enel Green Power has thus become the main player in the country’s entire solar power sector, in terms of installed capacity and project portfolio. The new capacity will be added to the existing 11 MW of Enel’s Fontes Solar I and II (Brazil’s largest photovoltaic complex currently in operation) and to a further 254 MW awarded to the company in November 2014 for the construction of the Ituverava solar plant.
Enel Green Power has also connected Brazil’s first hybrid plant to the network in the state of Pernambuco, in Tacaratu. The plant comprises the photovoltaic facilities of Fontes Solar I and II, combined with the adjacent wind farm Fontes dos Ventos (80 MW). The hybrid system is capable of producing about 340 GWh per year, enough to meet the energy consumption of about 170,000 households.
Therefore, hybrid renewable technologies are a trend that Enel is successfully developing, both in South America and in various areas of the world. Hybrid plants, which share the same infrastructure, allow for an increase in renewable energy production, optimising the features of each technology, while minimising the drawbacks that arise from the reduced programmability of sources like wind and solar.
In this field Enel has set two world records: one in the United States with the Stillwater plant (Nevada), which combines the continuous generation capacity of geothermal power with the peak capacity of solar power, and the other at the Cornia 2 geothermal facility in Tuscany, Italy, where the world’s first biomass plant used to heat steam has been built, in order to increase energy efficiency and the electricity production cycle.