Date: March 28
Investments in non-conventional renewable energy generation such as wind and solar are increasing more and more in Peru, hand in hand with growing demand and a regulatory framework that promotes these economic activities.
The world is entering a stage where the lowest environmental impact is prioritized and renewable energy sources are becoming more relevant than those derived from fossil fuels such as oil, natural gas and coal, which require millions of years to form.
The United Nations defines renewable energies as those derived from natural sources that are replenished faster than they can be consumed, such as sunlight and wind, because they are constantly renewed.
In this sense, the ESAN MBA professor, Sandor Lukacs, points out that in renewable energy, Peru has great potential in hydroelectricity.
“Peru’s strength has to focus on our comparative and clear competitive advantages. Specifically in the case of geographical advantages, Peru has a potential of 70,000 Megawatts (MW) of hydroelectric energy, currently our capacity ranges between 7,000 and 7,500 MW per year, but the potential is 10 times more”, he stresses.
It is clear that the economic and social development of a country is based on a sufficient supply of energy for its entire population. Fortunately for Peru, energy sources are not a major problem, it has oil, natural gas and a geography that allows it to generate hydroelectric energy, and in recent years non-conventional renewable energies have been added.
“Unconventional renewable energies in Peru are those made up of wind energy, which uses the force of the wind to generate electricity; solar energy, which is obtained from the use of solar radiation; hydroelectric plants of up to 20 MW, which transform the force of water into electrical energy”, explains the president of the Peruvian Association of Renewable Energies (SPR) Brendan Oviedo.
Also biomass, which takes advantage of the organic matter that comes from waste; geothermal energy, which comes from the heat inside the earth and has multiple applications, and tidal energy, which is obtained by taking advantage of the tides.
“They are infinite energies; and some, such as wind and solar, are already the most competitive energies and will help reduce the electricity rate that we Peruvians pay”, he underlines.
Likewise, he highlights that these energies are clean, do not generate greenhouse gas emissions, helping with their implementation to combat climate change and reduce air pollution.
Participation in the electrical matrix
The participation of non-conventional renewable energies in the electricity matrix in Peru has grown steadily in recent years, going from 3.4% in 2016 to 5.5% in 2022.
Likewise, 42.2% is made up of thermal plants that use natural gas (mainly from Camisea) and almost 50% by hydroelectric plants, which are exposed to risks of drought.
As for the 5.5% share of non-conventional renewable energy, this share is divided into wind (3.2%), solar (1.4%) and biomass (0.9%) plants, according to statistics from the Ministry of Energy and Mines ( minem).
Regarding the production of electrical energy, at the end of 2022, it amounted to 57,808 GWh, of which 5% comes from renewable energy sources such as wind and solar.
The president of the Peruvian Association of Renewable Energies (SPR) Brendan Oviedo, points out that Peru currently has 33 operational non-conventional renewable energy plants (1,129 MW of installed capacity as a whole), which represent an estimated investment of 2,000 million dollars.
Likewise, as of February 2023, there are 12 power plants with non-conventional renewable sources in the pipeline and with a definitive concession that add up to an approximate investment of 1,573 million dollars and 1,944 MW of installed capacity according to Minem.
“Additionally, there is the 298 MW Punta Lomitas Wind Power Plant currently under construction and with an estimated investment of 300 million dollars,” says the head of the SPR.
On the other hand, the labor impact of the investments made in current renewable energy operations is estimated at some 7,000 direct jobs, between wind, solar and biomass plants, says Brendan Oviedo.
On the other hand, the potential of Peru in non-conventional renewable energy resources (which includes solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, mini hydroelectric up to 20 MW, and tidal) is 130,000 MW (almost 10 times more than the existing installed capacity).
“In other words, we have renewable resources for local consumption and export,” Oviedo emphasizes.
According to the Diagnosis Report of the Operating Conditions of the National Interconnected Electric System (SEIN) for the Period 2025 – 2034 of the COES, the portfolio of projects under development includes 23,400 MW of solar and wind projects under development; and 4 hydroelectric power plant projects of less than 20 MW each, for a total of 59 MW under development. Additionally, there are two geothermal projects of 100 MW each under development in Arequipa and Moquegua.
“Valuing this portfolio of projects in potential investments results in estimates of more than 23,000 million dollars, assuming that it is feasible to implement 100 percent of this project portfolio,” Oviedo emphasizes.
Likewise, it indicates that the potential of direct and indirect jobs that would be generated with the implementation of 100% of this portfolio, would exceed 120,000 jobs, distributed in wind (70,000), solar (40,000), geothermal (18,000) and hydro ( 400).
Source: Peru Energy 2023