The Brazilian government recently launched an energy expansion plan to boost installed wind power generation capacity to 11.5 GW by 2020. Currently wind energy generates 1.5 GW of power for Brazil. This major increase in capacity brings huge investment opportunities for developers and entrepreneurs.
According to Jonathan Kendall, Founding partner of Rio Energy Consulting – TSS Brazil, everyone’s excited and there are hundreds of projects being planned.
Accroding to Ricardo Baitelo, Greenpeace’s renewable energy campaign coordinator in Sao Paulo, the future tenders will also be more profitable. This is because the government is poised to introduce equipment-import and other tax breaks, as well as cheaper financing rates through Brazil’s development bank BNDES, to make it all happen. Baitelo says a European-style feed-in tariff is not contemplated, however.
“The production price will go down to 200 reais (US$111) or even 100 reais (US$55) from around 300 reais (US$166) now,” once the government introduces the incentives, he adds.
According to Baitelo, the expansion is so aggressive that wind farms could very well overtake natural gas thermal plants as Brazil’s second-power generation source in five years, moving right behind the number one source — hydroelectric power.
“Right now the majority of the thermal power plants are running on natural gas, accounting for five percent of generation, though there is a small percentage of oil and diesel, accounting for four percent and coal for 1.8 percent,” Baitelo explains. “But the government doesn’t want to build more fuel-powered plants after 2015 as oil and biodiesel are more expensive to import and more polluting.”
That is why wind, as well as biomass, is expected to see huge development in coming years, observers say.
In the meantime, we’ll have a closer look at Brazil in the coming months. We at Tomorrow is Greener are really excited to see how things will progress in the South-American country.