Thermoelectric plants as backup

Energy    Nov 18, 2020 3:18 PM

The country’s thermal park will increase its participation in the energy matrix in the next two years.

Several thermal plants will enter, or start working, as part of the strategy to guarantee the reliability of the National Interconnected System (SIN), Portafolio said.

After the 2019 reliability charge auctions and long-term contracts, thermoelectric plants, along with renewable sources, committed to deliver energy with 13 projects, adding more than 1,000MW of installed capacity.

“Public policy and diversity of the energy matrix continues to take into account thermal plants as a fundamental pillar to guarantee the energy service,” the Vice Minister of Energy (MinEnergia), Miguel Lotero said.

He added that these facilities provide complementarity, resilience, and reliability to the system, mainly during times of low water availability.

“Thermoelectric plants function as a backup against the variability of unconventional renewable sources,” he explained.

Andeg’s Alejandro Castañeda then said that the expansion in the country’s generation system should be leveraged in the thermal park.

“There is no system in the world that is 100% renewable, and it must always rely on thermoelectric generation infrastructures,” Castañeda said.

The projects that started operations are Termovalle (40MW), Termoyopal I (50MW), Termoyopal II (50MW). Termoyopal III (50MW) is scheduled to start in early 2021.

TermoEDR, Termoproyectos, Termorubiales and Termojagüey, each with 20MW, are scheduled to start work in mid-2021.

The development of the thermal park will continue in 1H22 with the Termocandelaria (240MW), Termosolo I (148MW), Termosolo II (80MW) and Termocaribe III (42MW) plants.

Bottom-Line: Thermoelectric plants are a good backup to face intense summer weather events such as ‘El Niño’.

The Colombian energy matrix is ​​highly dependent on water sources and diversifying it is key to guaranteeing the energy supply.

Thermal plants will play a key role, while renewable energies gain reliability and consistency.

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