February 6 (Renewables Now) - Colombia’s first long-term renewable energy auction is on schedule, and so far, most of the submitted proposals are for projects on the Caribbean coast, the Ministry of Mines and Energy said Tuesday.
Of the 22 submitted projects, as many as 15 are spread across the administrative divisions on the Caribbean coast -- eight in the department of Atlantico, four in La Guajira, two in Cesar and one in Cordoba.
Colombian energy minister Maria Fernanda Suarez highlighted the potential for solar and wind power on the coast, as well as the investment, employment and regional development opportunities that the projects could create.
Colombia is one of the countries most vulnerable to climate change, which is why the ministry intends to diversify, complement and improve the competitiveness of the country’s energy mix, Minister Suarez said. According to the established timetable of the auction, Colombia's national mining and energy planning unit UPME will announce on February 20 which projects meet the technical, financial and legal requirements for the tender. The qualified companies can then participate in the auction on February 26.
With this tender, the Colombian government will award 12-year contracts as it seeks to cover an annual demand of 1.183 TWh.