• Irish renewable energy company Mainstream Renewable Power has secured environmental clearance from the Chilean government for its 123 MW solar PV project
  • It means the company can now proceed with construction on the 123 MW Valle Escondido Solar PV project
  • The plant will come up on 360-hectare land in Tierra Amarilla commune in the northern region of Atacama
  • It will use the same transmission line as for another solar power plant of the company with 170 MW capacity

Mainstream Renewable Power, a renewable energy project developer and operator from Ireland, has secured environmental approval for its proposed 123 MW solar power plant in Chile. The Environmental Evaluation Service for the Atacama region in Chile has approved Environmental Qualification Resolution (RCA) for the project.

To be developed for an estimated $150 million, the Valle Escondido PV Solar Project will be located on 360 hectares of land in the Tierra Amarilla commune in the northern region of Atacama. Mainstream plans to deploy 382,000 PV panels for the plant which will generate power for close to 125,000 homes annually.

On completion, it will be connected to the National Electric System (SEN) through a transmission line that also connects another solar power project of Mainstream, 170 MW Río Escondido. Chile’s national transmission company Transelec S.A. will design and built this transmission line.

“Obtaining environmental approval for Valle Escondido allows us to move forward with the construction of our 4,000 MW portfolio of wind and solar projects, which, in turn, will support the country’s decarbonisation goals and help to diversify the national energy matrix with clean energy,” said General Manager of Mainstream Latam, Manuel Tagle.

Chile’s Atacama region is currently a hotbed for large scale solar power developments. In May 2019, Sonnedix Power secured financial closure for its 171 MW Atacama Solar PV plant in Chile (see Financing Complete For 171 MW Chile Solar Plant). Acciona has also started construction on the 64 MW Usya PV plant in the country securing a ‘first’ green letter of credit for the project in the European financial system from Caixa Bank (see 64 MW PV Project Enters Construction In Chile).

Enel Green Power is also developing a 400 MW solar PV plant in Atacama Desert for which it will use Sungrow PV inverters (see Sungrow Inverters For Enel’s 400 MW Chile Project).