Colombia renewables auction 2021: new rules are out
Colombian ministry of mines and energy on Wednesday offered a glimpse of the rules that will govern the country’s 2021 renewable energy auction for long-term contracts.
The draft resolution will be out for public comment, but what is known for now is that the so-called non-conventional renewable energy projects of 5 MW and more can participate.
The projects have to be new as the country seeks to boosts its installed capacity and revive the economy sustainably in 2021 and 2022. This leaves out projects that have already secured contracts in the 2019 reliability charge auction and the tender for long-term contracts, the ministry explained.
Eligible projects must be registered with Colombia’s mining and energy planning unit UPME and approved at least at stage two out of UPME’s three approval cycles. In stage two, assessment of the technical, economic, environmental and social feasibility of the project is ascertained.
Projects also need to have connection rights approved by UPME and promoters of projects with a capacity between 5 MW and 20 MW have to declare that they accept centralised dispatch for the duration of the contract, the ministry said.
The ministry did not say how much capacity will be offered in the auction. Colombian president Ivan Duque first brought up the 2021 auction in a speech in November last year, saying that more than 5,000 MW will be up for contracts with power retailers serving large industrial consumers.
Just over a week ago, these 5,000 MW became “more than 4,800 MW” in another presidential speech.
There is also no mention of when the winning projects should start operations.
Also on Wednesday, the ministry of mines and energy said it had signed a resolution requiring participants in the wholesale power market to make non-conventional renewables account for 10% of their annual purchases.
Since 2019 and until 2022, this rule applies to retailers serving residential, commercial and small industry consumers. Starting in 2023, it will apply to all wholesale market agents regardless of the type of customer they serve.
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