Chile’s Codelco Launches Bid to Attract 2,500 GWh of Renewables Annually

Chile’s Codelco Launches Bid to Attract 2,500 GWh of Renewables Annually

Chilean state-owned copper mining giant Codelco has invited energy companies to participate in tenders to supply around 2,500 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of renewable power capacity annually from 2026 to 2040 for its operations in central and northern Chile.

Bidders are expected to offer electricity from non-conventional sources, such as solar and wind power plants, but also from conventional renewables, such as large-scale hydroelectric plants, the company said in a statement on Friday.

Codelco expects potential bidders to contact it via email no later than 10 February 2023, and then a pre-qualification process will begin. The specific terms of the tender will be announced to those companies that pre-qualify for it.

Why it matters

“We want to diversify our portfolio of renewable energy providers and encourage the development of this industry in favour of our sustainable development commitments, in line with global decarbonisation efforts,” said Codelco CEO André Sougarret, commenting on the upcoming tenders.

The new tender is a specific example of the company’s path toward becoming a benchmark for responsible mining, according to board chairman Máximo Pachecoaid. “We are aware of our ability to generate a positive and significant impact in the development of renewables,” he said.

Two years ago, Codelco announced its Sustainable Development Commitments, aiming to cut its carbon footprint by 70% by 2030. To make this reduction effective, the company’s main strategy is to achieve a 100% green electricity supply by 2030. Since 2018, it has already managed to eliminate coal as an energy source through the renegotiation of contracts with energy providers Engie in April 2018, Colbún in October 2022 and AES Andes earlier this month.

“The management of our matrix is key to our decarbonisation goals. Cleaning up our energy consumption means eliminating 65% of our total carbon footprint, which, in turn, is 15% of the footprint of the national copper mining industry and 4% of Chile’s footprint,” said Codelco’s vice president Mauricio Acuña.

As part ofits decarbonisation efforts, the company is also aiming to use only electrical equipment in its underground mines by 2030. icon

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