Brazil shores up power supply with thermal power ahead of wind

BRAZIL: Brazil's National Electric Energy Agency (ANEEL) awarded 925.95MW of wind power in the latest auction for power, on 28 November.

Wind power projects were awarded under 20% of the power allocation

The greatest portion of the A5 auction was awarded to thermal energy, totalling over 4GW, with an emphasis on gas projects, which negotiated 3GW for three projects. This amounts to 18.59% of the total allocation.

The A5 auction drew bids for over 577 wind projects, but only 36 were awarded at the auction for hydroelectric, wind, solar and thermoelectric plants.

Wind projects were awarded BRL 136/MWh for a 20 year period. This is higher than the BRL 124.43/MWh awarded last November to 867MW of wind, and BLR 109/MWh for 2.3GW in December 2013.

Despite Brazil’s reliance on hydropower, which has seen a reduction in availability in recent years, the auction allocated 400MW for small hydro projects. No large hydropower or solar projects were awarded.

The auction requires power supply to begin in five years, as noted in the name A5, from January 2019.

At Brazil Windpower 2014 in August, Mauricio Tolmasquim, chairman of the EPC energy research company, stated that the country would need new generation capacity of 70GW over the next ten years.

Tolmasquim expected that wind would deliver 20GW of this, with 9GW going to thermal, which is essential investment to avoid power-outs.