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Brazil breaks record in installed power capacity

Staff Writer | January 12, 2017
A total of 9,526 megawatts had been added to the Brazilian national energy grid by December last year, the highest value since the start of the series in 1998, according to data from the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel).
Brazil electricity
Energy in Brazil   The largest growth was in hydro
For this year, installed capacity is expected to increase by an additional 7,120 MW.

The largest growth in installed capacity (in absolute numbers) in 2016 was in hydro, which added about 5,000 MW to installed capacity (53% of the total increase).

The second largest source of growth was wind power, with 2,564 MW added to the grid (27% of total growth as of November 2016).

It was also the fastest-growing source: wind power grew its installed capacity by over 20% compared to 2015. By December 2016, there were 10,092 MW being generated by wind farms in Brazil. The state of Rio Grande do Norte was the largest contributor to the increase, with about 920 MW added, followed by Ceará (600 MW) and Bahia (520 MW).

Thermal power plants contributed an additional 1,758 MW to the grid in 2016 (representing 18% of total growth), while Small Hydro Power (SHP) added 203 MW (2%).

This year, the power source expected to show the highest numbers in absolute growth is again hydro, coming mostly from large power plants (approximately 4,000 MW). The relative growth of wind power will again be significant, with forecasts predicting an increase of about 2,400 MW in installed capacity.

Also of highlight are the works to advance motorisation of the Belo Monte HPP, to bring the Mauá wind farm into commercial operation and the Mauá 3 Thermal Power Plant (590 MW), the latter currently under construction in the city of Manaus (state of Amazonas).