Inspenet, May 12, 2023
The Energía del Pacífico power plant, which runs on natural gas, contributed up to 16% of the total electricity that El Salvador produced in 2022, and only in 2023 it already contributed up to 29% of the total.
The natural gas-based electricity generating plant, located off the coast of Acajutla, in Sonsonate, has already completed its first year of operating in the country, a period in which it has managed to consolidate itself as one of the most important in the national territory.
The project developed by Energía del Pacífico contributed in the last year to the supply of up to 25% of the national demand for electrical energy, and according to its representatives, since it began its operations it has also helped the energy matrix in the country to diversify.
In this sense, the founder and CEO of Invenergy, EDP’s largest shareholder, Michael Polsky, explained that another of the benefits that the plant has transferred to El Salvador is that, since January of this year, it has become an exporting country of electrical energy to the other countries of the Central American region.
According to EDP’s country director, José Sarmiento, the natural gas plant currently has the capacity to generate up to 380 megawatts/hour, of which some 355 are sold in the local market to the different electricity distributors in the country and the The remaining megawatts/hour are sold in the so-called opportunity market, so this generated electricity is exported to neighboring countries.
“Since our entry into operation on May 1, 2022, El Salvador can supply electricity efficiently and has boosted electricity exports to the rest of Central America. In the last year, with our operation we have covered 25% of the national demand and we have produced 1,660,000 Megawatts/hour”, explains Sarmiento.
The natural gas plant generates power 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year
According to the company, the fact that the country becomes an energy exporter is very important. Something that stands out is that the method with which electricity is generated in the plant, that is, with Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), is more efficient and reliable in terms of availability. “The plant is generating energy 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year,” says EDP’s country director.
According to EDP, the 20 generation units (19 engines and one steam turbine) have allowed the plant to have an availability of up to 98% throughout the year, thus becoming a complement to the renewable energy sources when they are not operating.
Energía del Pacífico, one of the few LNG terminals in Latin America, brings clean and reliable energy to El Salvador and the region
Due to this efficiency in electricity generation, the CEO of the company highlights that “Energía del Pacífico has become the most efficient, reliable and clean power plant in El Salvador. We are proud to operate the only natural gas-fired generation plant in the country and one of the few LNG terminals in the Pacific in Latin America.”
Likewise, Polski pointed out that efficiency and reliability was one of the promises that EDP assumed since the first stone was laid when construction of the project began, and stressed that “this plant is the most important and transformative electrical infrastructure project ever built.” in El Salvador”.
This last sentence can be seen not only in how big the project is at the infrastructure level, including a floating LNG storage terminal and the plant itself with its engines and turbines, but also in the total amount of the investment, which amounts to to about $1,150 million, which makes EDP the strongest private investment the country has registered.
This point was highlighted by the US ambassador to the country, William Duncan, who was also present at the press conference on the occasion of the first anniversary of Energía del Pacífico’s operations.
The representative of the Joe Biden government in the country affirmed that he feels “proud that an American investment is helping Salvadorans to obtain more affordable and reliable energy.”
“I’m talking about a company that brings with it very high standards of quality, production, development, sustainability and commitment to the community with impact projects,” he said.
Likewise, Ambassador Duncan added that “EDP is an example of how US private investment generates positive economic impacts, such as quality jobs, key development policies for its employees, commitment to the environment and commitment to the community.”
For her part, the Minister of Economy, María Luisa Hayem, recognized that the generating plant is important for El Salvador, as she explained that during 2022 it contributed up to 16% of the total energy produced in the country, and so far this year 2023, it already contributed up to 29% of all the electricity generated.
The EDP plant generates electricity through a thermal process that uses natural gas as fuel. According to Sarmiento, the floating terminal, located off the coast of Acajutla, has the capacity to store up to 137,000 cubic meters of LNG.
According to the country director, this amount of natural gas is enough to supply, for up to 45 days, and working at 100%, the operation of the Energía del Pacífico generating plant.
Source and photos : https://www.elsalvador.com/noticias/negocios/energia-pacifico-cubrio-25-demanda/1060392/2023/
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