(Atlas, 21.Aug.2019) — Atlas Renewable Energy, leader in clean energy across Latin America, announces that its largest project in Brazil, the Juazeiro Solar Plant, is fully operational. The plant has an installed capacity of 156 MWp (megawatts peak) and will generate an estimated 357 GWh yearly. Located in Juazeiro, state of Bahia, it includes the first digital substation installed in Latin America which enhances controllability and reliability. The total amount invested in the plant was approximately $650M Brazilian Reals, equivalent to USD $165M.
In 2015, the Juazeiro Solar Plant was contracted through a 20-year energy purchase agreement (PPA) in a Regulated Auction (8º Leilão de Energia de Reserva – 2º LER). Now the plant’s 475,200 modules span over 350 hectares, and is projected to generate 357 GWh annually, which could benefit 207,592 families per year and reduce the emission of more than 47,000 tons of carbon dioxide, according to the company’s calculations.
Using the first digital substation in the region, the Juazeiro Solar Plant breaks technological boundaries by advancing in the efficiency and quality of energy distribution. A digital substation works like the heart of a power grid, transmitting and distributing electricity to distant locations, while increasing local operators’ productivity, safety and reliability. Compared to a conventional substation, digitalization requires substantially less space, reduces the quantity of copper wire needed, and facilitates more efficient operation of utility networks including monitoring, diagnostics and control. This approach falls in line with Atlas Renewable Energy’s continuous work towards innovating all aspects of its business, while positioning Brazil as a regional leader in technological advances.
As part of Atlas Renewable Energy’s social and environmental commitment, the company donated hundreds of seedlings of the Giant Umbu species, a native plant that can be used as a source of income for the neighboring communities and that contributes to the local biodiversity, preserving Caatinga Biome, flora unique in Brazil’s northeastern region. The company’s commitment with local communities was also echoed by granting the necessary materials to build the local community association center and by promoting awareness campaigns developed through educational programs that focused on recycling, sustainability, environment, food waste management, and welfare.
“Our goal at Atlas Renewable Energy is to lead solar innovation in Latin America and to continue introducing and implementing the most advanced technologies available in the region. Atlas continuously looks to the next evolution of this industry, while positioning ourselves as a trusted partner that can deliver the highest standard solar installations.” He recognized the financial support from Banco do Nordeste (BNB), Pactual, Banco ABC Brasil, and Banco Bradesco for their role in accelerating investment in renewable energy projects throughout the country, “The support from the financial entities has been instrumental; the product of this collaboration is a testament to the role the private sector can play to help support Brazil’s future infrastructure needs.”— Carlos Barrera, CEO at Atlas Renewable Energy
“Our team at Atlas Renewable Energy delivers large-scale projects that contribute to Brazil’s continuously-growing renewable energy market and reliably deliver clean energy to consumers. We do so with careful attention to all stakeholders, to ensure a positive effect to the broadest ecosystem. In Atlas, we pride ourselves in granting energy access to over a million people through all our operations in Latin America.” He continued, “We always aim to set the bar high, and the Juazeiro Solar Plant is another example of this.”— Luis Pita, Atlas Renewable Energy’s General Manager for Brazil
Atlas Renewable Energy has been an active player in the development of Brazil’s renewable energy sector for the past years through investments totaling R $1.3B to date, of which R $600M were financed by BNB. In Brazil, Atlas Renewable Energy operates 304 MWp and has an additional 117 MWp under construction, totaling 421 MWp of photovoltaic projects in the country. In April 2019, Atlas Renewable Energy began construction of its fourth project, the Sertão Solar Barreiras, in the state of Bahia, expected to begin operations in the fourth quarter of 2019.