Paraguay’s Acaray hydropower plant to be rehabilitated and modernized by AFRY consortium
In a bid to expand the hydro complex with the development of 19 small hydro projects, solar photovoltaic plants, hybrid and battery energy storage systems, the state-owned power utility, Administración Nacional de Electricidad (ANDE) in Paraguay has awarded the planning and supervision of the rehabilitation and modernization of the 200 MW Acaray hydropower plant to AFRY, in consortium with Latinoconsult S.A.
Renovation and modernisation project
Commissioned in 1969, the Acaray hydroelectric station is one of the most important power plants to meet the country’s growing energy demand and to accelerate the sustainability transition. The renovation and modernisation project is part of ANDE’s 2021-2040 Generation Roadmap, which envisions the expansion of the hydro complex.
Rehabilitation and modernisation services
AFRY, with its consortium partner Latinoconsult from Argentina, will provide full services for the rehabilitation and modernisation of the Acaray hydropower plant. The project aims to extend the plant’s lifecycle, improve its availability and reliability, and increase the electrical generation capacity.
The first phase of the project is expected to last approximately 20 months. During this phase, AFRY will review previous studies and design technical solutions that will be tendered and ultimately implemented during the second phase of the contract, which will take place over the following 40 months.
During the execution of the rehabilitation work, AFRY will supervise the contractors on-site and verify the technical and social-environmental compliance of the project.
Importance of hydropower in Paraguay
As hydropower is the main source of clean energy in Paraguay, the 200MW Acaray–Yguazú complex is a critical power plant to meet the country’s growing energy demand and accelerate the sustainability transition. It is therefore essential to modernize and improve the power generation infrastructure with state-of-the-art technology, security systems, monitoring instrumentation and emergency action plans, in order to guarantee the safety of neighboring population centers and improve the sustainability of the electricity service by ensuring continuity and an increase in renewable energy.
Patrick Furrer, Country Manager of AFRY Chile, expressed his pride and satisfaction for the possibilities opened up by the signing of the contract. “We are proud to be able to deliver sustainable solutions and further improve energy generation infrastructure for the projects included in ANDE’s Master Plan for Generation Roadmap. This is one of the most important assignments for the modernization and rehabilitation of hydroelectric power plants in Latin America, and at AFRY, we believe this is the way forward when addressing the challenges of climate change and sustainability.”
ANDE’s role in Paraguay’s development
With this project, ANDE not only fulfills its Master Plan but also confirms its primary role as a key state-owned company for the country’s development. “With the same vision as sixty years ago, today we are securing the hydroelectric energy system of the country once again, and we are also entering Paraguay’s photovoltaic potential market. Without slowing down our efforts after achieving our energy bonus and surplus, we are committed to working with a medium and long-term vision, always looking for better energy sources. The panels of experts consider the repowering of existing energy sources as the best alternative for greater energy availability according to cost-benefit and sustainability criteria. We are therefore at the forefront. With this project, we are preparing to restore our first hydroelectric power plant, which is still the only 100% Paraguayan so far”, said ANDE’s President, Eng. Félix Sosa.
In conclusion, the rehabilitation and modernization of the Acaray hydropower plant is a significant step for Paraguay in meeting its growing energy demands and further establishing itself as a leading producer of clean renewable energy per capita. By investing in state-of-the-art technology and infrastructure, Paraguay is working towards a more sustainable future and reducing its carbon footprint. The partnership between ANDE, AFRY, and Latinoconsult is a promising development in the renewable energy sector, and we can expect more such projects to come up in the future.
It is crucial to recognize the importance of hydropower in the transition to renewable energy sources, and the rehabilitation of existing hydropower plants, like the Acaray hydropower plant, is an important step in this direction. As the world becomes increasingly conscious of the impacts of climate change, investing in renewable energy sources is essential for sustainable development.