Peru utility to invest in dam enlargement at 1,008-MW Mantaro

Peru utility Electroperu plans to invest 50 million soles (US$16.5 million) to enlarge Tablachaca Dam to increase water storage for the 1,008-MW Mantaro hydroelectric complex.

In a statement issued by national financing agency Fonafe, Electroperu President Luis Bedoya predicted global warming would reduce glaciers and dry up rivers. The only way to offset that, he said, is to store more water by heightening and enlarging dams.

Bedoya said the investment would allow the utility to carry out a reinforcement project and to initiate a second plan that will culminate next year.

�We also will make investments in the maintenance of the hydroelectric power station, since we have some problems that will force us to invest nearly 20 million soles (US$6.6 million) in works of reinforcement of a slope on the right side of the dam of Tablachaca,� Bedoya said.

The Mantaro hydropower complex includes the 180-meter-tall Tablachaca Dam, a system of other dams that regulate flows on the Mantaro River, the 798-MW Santiago Antunez de Mayolo hydro plant, and the 210-MW Restitucion hydro plant. (HNN 2/15/08)

Electroperu said the investments would provide water reserves enabling the Mantaro complex to continue operating in time of drought and helping hold down electricity tariffs for replacement power.

�Electroperu has various projects in study and they must be developed because we are a hydraulic generator that supports the burden of the tariffs so they do not soar,� the utility official said.

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