Italian energy company Enel, through its subsidiary Enel Green Power Brasil Participações, has started operations at the 158MW Lapa solar park in Brazil.
The solar park comprises two solar plants including the 80MW Bom Jesus da Lapa and the 78MW Lapa plant. It is considered to be the largest solar park in operation in the country.
Enel said that it has invested around $175m for the construction of the project, which is supported by a 20-year supply contracts with the Brazilian Chamber of Commercialisation of Electric Energy.
As per the company, the project which is located in the state of Bahia, introduces a cost-efficient design with new tracker solutions and new conversion units.
The project also saw the introduction of a new commissioning strategy that resulted in the reduction of average time to commission the plant by about 70%.
Lapa Solar Park
The Lapa solar park, which has a capacity to generate about 340GWh of power per year, is expected to meet the electricity needs of about 166,000 Brazilian households, while avoiding 198,000 tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere.
Enel Brazil country manager Carlo Zorzoli said: “The entry into service of Lapa is an important milestone for Enel in Brazil since it is the first solar PV project to become operational this year out of the four PV projects currently under construction by the Group in the country.
“We were able to complete and commission Lapa more than two months ahead of the deadline set by the rules of the 2015 public tender which awarded us the project, therefore confirming our commitment to contribute to Brazil¿s growth in the renewable sector and our leadership in the country’s photovoltaic market.
“Furthermore, this project will deliver much needed power to the energy thirsty northeast of Brazil that is currently facing a serious drought.”
Recently, the Enel has acquired two wind farms with 54.5MW capacity from Amec Foster Wheeler. These two wind farms are located in Italy’s southern region of Campania.
The two plants can generate about 90GWh of electricity per year and are located in the municipalities of Vallesaccarda (22.5 MW) and Scampitella (32 MW), in the province of Avellino.
While the 22.5MW wind farm has been in operation since 2006, the 32MW wind farm has been running since 2008. With this acquisition, Enel’s portfolio of installed wind power capacity is now 718MW.