GDF SUEZ is to further consolidate its position in Chile through the construction of an on-shore LNG storage tank in the North of Chile. The tank is part of the GNL Mejillones terminal, which GDF SUEZ jointly owns with Codelco, the world’s main copper producer.
By such investment GDF SUEZ will also increase its stake in the LNG company to 63%, in line with its long-term strategic vision for Chile.
The tank, which will be completed by 2013, has a capacity of 175,000 m3 and will be built to the highest security and seismic standards. After an international tender, the tank construction was awarded to Tecnicas Reunidas which completed the first phase of the terminal. Project supervision will be undertaken by Tractebel Engineering, an affiliate of the GDF SUEZ Group.
“This project is part of our effort to reduce the country’s dependency on fossil fuels, contributing positively to the environment and diversifying its energy supply. This was recently recognised by the ‘most significant development’ award that GNL Mejillones received from CIGRE, a Chilean Energy committee”, commented Dirk Beeuwsaert, Executive Vice President GDF SUEZ, in charge of Energy Europe & International.
Since April of this year, GNL Mejillones has delivered over two million cubic meters per day of natural gas to the generation companies E-CL and Gas Atacama to convert LNG into electricity under contracts with four major mining companies located in the north of the country as well as direct gas sales to a portfolio of industrial clients. Electricity produced with the LNG currently represents approximately 25% of the electricity market in the North of Chile.
GDF SUEZ in Chile
GDF SUEZ operates in Chile through E-Cl, the largest electricity producer in Chile’s northern network, representing around 50% of the market. The Group has a 63% stake in the LNG receiving and regasification terminal GNL Mejillones, and at the end of 2009 completed the construction of Monte Redondo, a 38 MW wind farm which is part of the country’s central grid.
Currently under construction are the thermoelectric plants CTA and CTH in Mejillones (150 MW each), the hydroelectric plant Laja I (34 MW) as well as the extension of the Monte Redondo wind farm to 48 MW.
Through SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT’s equity stake in Aguas Andinas, GDF SUEZ is also active in providing drinking water and sanitation services for over 6 million residents in Santiago and neighboring areas, which constitute 38.7% of Chile’s water market. Through Agbar, SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT controls 56.6% of Inversiones Aguas Metropolitanas Limitada, the 50.1%.majority shareholder of Aguas Andinas.
Through Degrémont, and for the account of Aguas Andinas, SUEZ ENVIRONNEMENT constructed Santiago’s Farfana wastewater treatment plant. Designed to process wastewater for 3.7 million inhabitants, the Farfana plant is one of the largest wastewater treatment plants in Latin America and in the world.