El Salvador’s power distributors have this week signed contracts for the winning projects in the country’s renewable energy auction, which was held by the government in January. Among the projects are four PV plants with a combined capacity of 119.9 MW.
The auction ended with an average price of $51.48/MWh. This is the lowest price registered to date for PV projects in power auctions in Latin America. In the tender, El Salvador’s authorities also awarded a contract to a 50 MW wind project, which will sell power at $98.78/MWh.
Projects selected in the auction will be granted a 20-year PPA. Overall, 29 bids with a combined capacity of 1.04 GW were submitted for the auction.
In January, two solar projects of 50 MW each were awarded by El Salvador’s National Energy Council (CNE) to Capella Solar at $49.55 and $49.56/MWh. Furthermore, a 10 MW plant was also won by Sonsonate Energía at a price of $67.24/MWh, while the fourth project awarded was a 9.9 MW project by Asocio Ecosolar which was registered at a price of $54.98/MWh.
With these, more PV capacity was awarded than was originally envisioned, as the auction had a cap of 100 MW for solar PV and 70 MW for wind.
It is estimated that the five projects awarded represent an investment of $340 million.
This is the second renewable energy auction to have been held in El Salvador to date. The first auction in 2014 planned for 100 MW, 50 MW of which was set aside for PV plants and 50 MW to wind. However, only PV projects were awarded, which totaled 94 MW and are expected to enter into operation this year.