Chafariz Wind Farm (PB) had operation started in advance. At the moment, 53 wind turbines are already in operation
Focused on decarbonization, Neoenergia accelerated the construction works of its largest renewable energy projects in the country and anticipated the delivery of the first wind farms of the Chafariz wind farm project, located in Paraíba. In the last quarter, the company started the operation of four farms of the enterprise, which add up to an installed capacity of 184 MW, energy that has already benefited the electric system in this time of water shortage. The period also saw an increase in investments, which reached R$1.2 billion for renewables, representing a 319% growth in the segment's Capex.
In total, the company allocated about R$2 billion for renewables from January to September this year, being approximately R$1.7 billion for wind power projects.
The commercial operation of the first generating units of the Chafariz wind project started in July, 17 months ahead of the start of the contract in the regulated market. Today, the enterprise already has 53 active wind turbines distributed in three farms.
With 21 wind farms in operation, including the four new ones, Neoenergia boosted wind generation, which was 748 GWh in the third quarter of the year, an increase of 12.48% compared to the same period in 2020. Considering the nine months, generation was 1,555 GWh, 17.96% above that recorded in 9M20.
Another 11 farms in Chafariz are in the final stages of construction and should be delivered by the end of the year, also exceeding the business plan initial estimates. Altogether, this project will have an installed capacity of 471.2 MW.
Besides producing clean energy, contributing to decarbonization, the project creates socioeconomic benefits and stimulates sustainable development. Since the beginning of the construction of the new farms, Neoenergia has carried out several actions, such as promoting training courses, donating photovoltaic panels to health units, refurbishing a school, and supporting the quilombola community of Serra do Talhado, located in the surroundings of the construction sites. More than 1.4 thousand jobs were generated during construction, with approximately 40% being local labor. In addition, the wind turbines installed were manufactured in Bahia and Pernambuco, extending the benefits to other northeastern states.
The undertaking has operational synergy with another important Neoenergia project under implementation in the Sertão of Paraíba, the Luzia solar plants. The plant will have 149MWdc and 100MW of installed capacity. The construction work began in May of this year and is progressing, with operations expected to start in the second half of 2022. Both Chafariz and Luzia are connected to the National Interconnected System (SIN) through the Santa Luzia II substation, which is part of the transmission project acquired by the company in lot 6 of the auction held by the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel) in December 2017.
Neoenergia continues with an accelerated pace of works also for the installation of what will be its largest wind project in Brazil, Oitis, with 12 farms that will be located between Piauí and Bahia. Construction started at the end of last year, three months ahead of schedule, and today more than 62% of the foundations are complete. The company expects to start assembling the first wind turbines still in 2021, and the project should start operating in the first half of 2022, adding 566.5 MW of installed capacity.
With the completion of Chafariz and Oitis, Neoenergia's portfolio of wind assets will reach 1.6 GW in 2022, three times what it had at the beginning of 2021. In wind power, 51% of the installed capacity will be destined for the Regulated Contracting Environment (ACR) and 49% for the Free Contracting Environment (ACL). This positioning is aligned with the strategy in the liberalization of the country's energy market.
In addition, the wind complexes will be responsible for the expansion of renewable energy, which today already represents 86.9% in the company and will be 90%, a profile even cleaner than the Brazilian electricity matrix. This shows the company's commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), primarily with the generation of clean energy and the fight against climate change.