Bolivia sees local support for 800-MW Cachuela Esperanza

Bolivian officials report that farmers in the Amazon Region are demanding that construction begin on the 800-MW Cachuela Esperanza hydroelectric project in order to solve a shortage of electricity in Beni and Pando departments.

State-owned Agencia Boliviana de Informacion said May 27, 2009, that was the conclusion relayed by Bolivian officials at a meeting with their Brazilian counterparts on the environmental effects of constructing mega-dams on the Madeira River.

“There exists total consensus in the population for the construction of the hydroelectric project, although with corresponding studies of environmental impact,” Bolivia Vice Minister of Electricity Miguel Yague said.

Canadian contractor TECSULT-AECOM is to complete final design of Cachuela Esperanza by September. (HydroWorld 4/21/09) It also is to study possible cumulative environmental effects of Cachuela Esperanza and two big Brazilian projects being built on the Madeira, 3,300-MW Jirau and 3,150-MW Santo Antonio.

TECSULT-AECOM also is expected to identify other possible projects in the area of Cachuela Esperanza on the Beni River upstream from where it joins the Mamore River to form the Madeira River that flows into Brazil.

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