August 7 (Renewables Now) - Brazil's president Jair Bolsonaro has signed a degree that enables the development of photovoltaic (PV) projects along the Sao Francisco River.
The Sao Francisco River Integration Project (PISF), which should supply water to 12 million people in drought-stricken states, is now under the Investment Partnership Program (PPI) as a priority project.
The president has also authorised the minister of mines and energy, Bento Albuquerque, and the minister of regional development, Gustavo Canuto, to launch renewable energy auctions in order to attract private sector interest in the river transposition area.
According to recent estimates, this whole initiative could result in investments of around BRL 15 billion (USD 3.76bn/EUR 3.36bn), the government stated.
The government aims to increase the energy potential in the area covered by the PISF, estimated at 3.5 GW, and lower costs related to water pumping that currently reach BRL 300 million annually.
(BRL 1 = USD 0.251/EUR 0.224)