Chile opts for for $7 b Renewable Energy Investments

Chile is attracting $7 billion of renewable investments from various firms including Abengoa and SunEdison.

The government is planning to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels to supply cheaper power to the state.

Chile is a country flourishing in mining industry, which provides a third of the world’s copper.

It’s a good economy with a stable political environment. Renewables will become much bigger part of the Chilean electricity supply, stated government officials.

Pattern Energy who owns a wind farm in Chile has plans to proceed with a solar plant at Atacama Desert.

Already, the Pattern has received an environmental permit for one solar project.

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The El Arrayan wind farm with 10 wind power projects is San Francisco-based Pattern’s first venture outside North America.

The company’s Pattern Energy unit owns 70 percent of El Arrayan while London-based Antofagasta has 30 percent. The wind farm will provide power to Antofagasta Plc’s Los Pelambres copper mine.

In Chile, power prices have doubled in the last seven years and could increase 30 percent in future.

Chile is not facing blackouts, but it needs more grid and diversified sources to avoid further cost increases, as per government estimates.

The government is playing an active role by issuing permits for projects and involving communities to avert legal disputes.

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