Pacific Hydro advances with its first wind farm in Chile

15 June 2012

Leading renewable energy company Pacific Hydro submitted today the Declaration of Environmental Impact of its first wind farm project in Chile to the Environmental Assessment Service of the Coquimbo Region.

The Punta Sierra wind farm will be located in the municipality of Ovalle, approximately 320km north of the capital Santiago, and will generate around 310 GWh/year, enough power to supply 175,000 Chilean homes.

“This is an important step for Pacific Hydro as it demonstrates our commitment to continue investing in the development,  delivery and operation of renewable energy projects in the country,” said Alfredo Zañartu, development manager for Pacific Hydro Chile.

Zañartu said that the company has been monitoring the wind resource in the area since 2008, and that Pacific Hydro’s corporate engineering team in Australia, where the company has nine operating wind farms and eight under development, played an important role in the engineering design of the project.

Pacific Hydro already has two wind farms in South America located in Brazil’s northeast.

The company is expecting to commence construction of the project in the first half of 2013, once the environmental permit has been granted. Punta Sierra will require an investment of approximately US$250 million.

“We expect the construction of Punta Sierra to last around 20 months,” explained Zañartu. “When operating, the project will abate over 200,000 tones of greenhouse gas pollution every year, the equivalent to taking more than 80,000 vehicles off the road.”