Martifer Solar, a subsidiary of Martifer SGPS, is building a 30MW photovoltaic plant in Mexico, reportedly the largest to date in Latin America. The company is responsible for the engineering, procurement and construction services of the plant and will also provide the operation and maintenance services upon completion. The project will be funded by local development bank Nafin, by International Finance Corporation (IFC, the World Bank Group) and Corporación Aura Solar.
The plant, which is being constructed for Gauss Energía http://gauss.com.mx/index_english.html is located in La Paz, Baja California Sur, on a 100-hectare site. It is Mexico’s first utility-scale solar project under a PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) contract between a private company and Comisión Federal de Electricidad, Mexico’s federal power company, ensuring the sale of the produced energy over 20 years.
“Due to its dimension, this project in Mexico will open the way for the development of the photovoltaic sector in the country, where, to date, were installed 13MW of PV projects”, said Hector Olea, CEO of Gauss Energía, a Mexican company specialized in project development in the energy sector.
With approximately 132,000 modules installed on single-axis trackers, this plant will have a production capacity of 82GWh/year, the equivalent to the average energy consumption of almost 160,000 inhabitants, and will be equivalent to offsetting the emission of more than 60,000 tons of CO2 per year. The park’s construction is scheduled to be completed in August 2013.
With a high level of sun exposure, Mexico stands out due to a high potential in the photovoltaic sector; it is expected to have an exponential growth on the installed capacity during the coming years, to allow for the country to reach its target of 35% of energy being provided by renewable energy by 2026.
“The construction of the Latin America’s largest PV plant confirms our best expectations for 2013,” said Henrique Rodrigues, CEO of Martifer Solar. “This is an emblematic project for Martifer Solar, in a region that, due to its irradiation characteristics, finds solar electricity as a viable and more competitive alternative, when compared with non-renewable energy sources.”
Martifer Solar has been present in the Mexican market since 2011. To date, the largest solar project operating in Mexico has 5MW in capacity, and the country has around 13MW of total installed capacity.