The economic recovery after the Covid-19 pandemic should be green, marked by intensified investments in decarbonization and the fight against climate change. This necessarily involves clean and renewable energies. Aligned with this trend, Neoenergia is moving forward with the construction of the Chafariz Wind Complex, in the Paraíba hinterland, which is expected to be concluded in January 2022 and will double the installed capacity of wind generation of the company in the country. In a year of construction work, a milestone recorded in October, 34.61% of civil interventions were carried out. Since the beginning of the project, sustainable solutions have been prioritized, such as the use of steel frame, a technique that generates less waste in construction.
Putting the Health and Safety of employees and communities in first place, Neoenergia is a reference in complying with the Prevention Protocol to the COVID -19 built with a lot of dialogue with the local society and acting together with the municipalities and state governments.
The strategy in Brazil is in line with that of Iberdrola, its controlling shareholder, which is a world leader in renewable energies and in the last 20 years has allocated more than 100 billion euros for investments in the area. The group's global plan is to neutralize carbon emissions by 2050. "The expansion of the wind portfolio is Neoenergia's focus, contributing with a more sustainable socioeconomic model. The new investments, which have the construction of the Chafariz Wind Complex as one of the protagonists, will make the company reach 2022 with 90% of installed capacity of renewable energies, an energy matrix even cleaner than the Brazilian one", says the Renewables officer, Laura Porto.
A estratégia no Brasil
segue em consonância com a da Iberdrola, sua acionista controladora, que é
líder mundial em energias renováveis e nos últimos 20 anos destinou mais de 100
bilhões de euros para investimentos na área. O plano global do grupo é
neutralizar as emissões de carbono até 2050. “A expansão da carteira eólica
é o foco da Neoenergia, contribuindo com um modelo socioeconômico mais
sustentável. Os novos investimentos, que têm a construção do Complexo Chafariz
como um dos protagonistas, farão com que a companhia chegue a 2022 com 90% da
capacidade instalada de energias renováveis, uma matriz energética ainda mais
limpa do que a brasileira”, afirma a diretora de Renováveis, Laura
Chafariz will have 15 wind farms, with an installed capacity of 471.2 MW, enough to supply 3 million people. This energy will be produced by 136 SG132 model wind turbines, one of the most modern on the market with 3.4 MW unit power and blades that reach 65 meters long. Besides the efficiency of the equipment, the stimulus to the local development was determinant in the choice, since they will be manufactured by Siemens Gamesa, in Camaçari, Bahia.
In 12 months of work, 100 foundations were completed to receive the wind turbines, nine of them concreted in just one week, above average in projects in the country. The first tower of the transmission line that will connect the wind complex to the consumption centers was also assembled. The connection of the Chafariz Complex will be made at the Santa Luzia 2 Substation, also being constructed by Neoenergia - which won lot 6 of the 002/2017 auction held by the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel).
In October, almost 1,400 professionals were employed in two construction sites in the region of Santa Luzia, about 260 kilometers from the capital João Pessoa. More than 1.5 million working hours are already computed. The labor force has approximately 40% of local workers and, in order to stimulate socioeconomic development in the region, Neoenergia held professional training courses in partnership with Senai, where around 115 workers were trained, of which 15 were hired to work in the project.
The progress in the works during the pandemic was possible thanks to a health and safety protocol, which included actions such as the mandatory use of masks and distance between employees. The company did mass testing of all the professionals who work on the site, prioritizing those who are from the region. 770 rapid tests of Covid-19 to the local municipalities, 17 digital thermometers and hygiene kits for the health departments and food baskets were also donated for the quilombola communities Serra do Talhado, Lagoa de Redinha, Pinga, Bananeira, Mulunguzinho and Saco do Goitis. This protocol has proved so efficient that the number of contaminated in the project is very low and we have recently reached the historical mark of zero contaminated.
"Besides being a clean source and contributing to the decarbonization of the economy, wind energy has a very important social role. Our projects bring economic development to these regions and, at the moment of pandemic, they contribute with sanitary conditions, information and protocols to fight the disease", states the Neoenergia Renewable Projects Superintendent, Leandro Montanher.
The wind power complex will have three substations, which already have the transformers installed, each with 100 MVA power. This equipment is to raise the energy voltage in order to reduce losses.
Currently under construction is the largest Command House that the Neoenergia group has ever installed in Brazil, which is located at the South II substation, from where part of the activities will be commanded - the other North and South I Substations will be remotely commanded from Neoenergia's headquarters, in Rio de Janeiro. The speed in the construction of the Command House was reinforced by the chosen technique, of steel frame, in which galvanized steel structures are used with cement plates in the external area and plaster in the internal part. The assembly took place in 60 days, three months less than the average of other systems. In addition, to reduce the implementation time, we used electro centers, structures that will hold the medium voltage cubicles in a kind of container specially prepared for this. They will arrive ready and pre-commissioned from the factory and will only be attached to the foundation structure.
"We had more agility and environmental gains when choosing these solutions in the project. Due to the choice of materials and innovative construction methods, we have reduced the amount of waste at the construction site, besides using a smaller amount of resources such as water, which is quite scarce in the region", celebrates Neoenergia's Renewables Construction Manager, William Carneiro.
Besides Chafariz, Neoenergia is investing in the Oitis Wind Complex, which is in the environmental licensing phase. Until 2022, 12 parks will be constructed between Bahia and Piauí, with an installed capacity of 566.5 MW. The company will reach 1.6 GW of installed power, enough to supply 10 million people, population of a country like Portugal. In Oitis, 96% of the energy generated will go to the free market, expanding the group's business.
Neoenergia believes that innovation is a strategic variable in all the group's businesses. Facing the future, the focus on innovation will continue to be a priority to ensure sustainability, efficiency and competitiveness in order to maintain the forefront of development of new products, services and business models that are transforming the sector.