Hydro investments important component in Colombian utility’s 2018 budget

Colombian utility Empresas Publicas de Medellin has earmarked nearly a billion dollars for hydropower plant investments in its 2018 capital budget.

The primary beneficiary will be EPM’s 2.4-GW Ituango project, which is set to receive about US$510 million of the company’s $4.7 billion in 2018 allocations, though a further $408 million will be applied to the Dolores, Guadalupe 4, Guatape, Playas, Porce 2 and Troneras hydro plants.

Other funds will be used to for the utility’s transmission and distribution systems, rural electrification initiative, waste-reduction plan and public lighting installations under EPM’s “commitment to development and community well-being” mantra.

The first turbine unit at Ituango is expected to begin operating in late 2018. Alstom won a contract to outfit the plant in November 2012 before beginning the transport of materials to the site in September 2015.

Ituango is located on the Cauca River in Antioquia. The plant will be Colombia’s largest when it enters full operation.

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Michael Harris formerly was Editor for HydroWorld.com.

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