Norwegian renewable energy developer Statkraft A/S obtained the environmental approval to develop a 671MW PV project in Chile’s Antofagasta Province in late March. This story was first reported by other renewable energy news outlets.
Named the Pauna Solar Project (Park), the PV array will be complemented by a 2.06MWh BESS, a substation, two connection alternatives, and a 220kV transmission line. The total investment in the project is estimated around USD 496 million (EUR 450.8 million).
The project will be placed in Maria Elena, a commune in Antofagasta. The whole site will span an area of 809ha. The PV array will comprise more than one million bifacial modules, and the BESS will be able to maintain discharge for about four hours.
The Pauna Solar Project is part of a wider green energy network that Statkraft intends to develop in the province. Specifically, the company is developing a local green hydrogen production base that can leverage the access to the port city of Antofagasta (same name as the province). Additionally, the region has a very high level of solar radiation that can be converted into electricity for powering hydrogen production.
The Pauna Solar Project is scheduled to enter commercial operation in 2024. According to available information, Statkraft has been in Chile for about eight years. The company operates the 53MW Rucatayo Hydroelectric Power Plant that is located on the Pilmaiquen River south of Santiago. The company has also acquired three wind farms that are under development in central Chile. Together, the three wind farms will have a generation capacity of 109.35MW.