Spain's grid operator gets EU funds for pumped-storage project
The Carretera de Arinaga wind farm. Image source: Aquimes City Council (www.aguimes.es)
Spanish power grid operator Red Electrica de Espana (REE) said on Friday it had been granted EUR 90 million (USD 97.5m) in aid from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) for the Salto de Chira pumped-storage hydro project on the island of Gran Canaria, Spain.
Construction of the complex started about a year ago, with the REE saying at the time its investment in the project would exceed EUR 400 million.
Salto de Chira will feature a set of facilities, including a pumped-storage hydroelectric station with a capacity of 200 MW in turbine mode and 220 MW in pumped mode built between existing water reservoirs, a seawater desalination plant and connection infrastructure.
REE estimates that the complex will be capable of storing 3.6 GWh of surplus renewable electricity at times when it cannot be absorbed by the Canary Island’s electricity system.
The Canary Islands, being an isolated electricity system, depend for energy from outside sources much more than Spain as a whole. In 2022, renewables accounted for 20.1% of the Canary Islands’ total generation mix, compared to 43.7% in mainland Spain, REE said.
The Salto de Chira facility will help the archipelago raise renewables production by 37% once its starts pumping, according to the grid operator.
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