Brazil bank finances 29-MW Alto Sucuriu, 27-MW Cachoeirao

Brazil’s national development bank has approved a total of 141.5 million reais (US$67.5 million) in financing for two small hydro projects being developed in Brazil’s Mato Grosso do Sul and Minas Gerais states.

Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Economico e Social (BNDES) approved 70.2 million reais (US$33.5 million) for Onix Geracao de Energia Eletrica S.A. for construction of the 29-MW Alto Sucuriu project on the Sucuriu River. (HNN 10/25/06) The project includes a 30-kilometer, 138-kV transmission line.

Alto Sucuriu is qualified under the national incentive program for alternative power producers, Programa de Incentivo as Fontes Alternativas de Energia Eletrica (Proinfa). Proinfa project sponsors have access to subsidized financing from BNDES and will sell power to national utility Eletrobras for 20 years.

BNDES is to finance 70 percent of the total 110.4 million real (US$52.6 million) project.

BNDES also approved 71.3 million reais (US$34 million) for Hidreletrica Cachoeirao S/A for construction of the 27-MW Cachoeirao project on the Manhuacu River. The 104 million real (US$49.6 million) project includes a 38-kilometer transmission line.

BNDES said the Cachoeirao funding is the first it has approved under the Minas PCH Program, created in 2004 by Minas Gerais State. The project is to make feasible the construction of small hydro projects — pequenas centrais hidreletricas (PCH) — in the state through partnerships of private investors and Brazilian utility Companhia Energetica de Minas Gerais (Cemig).

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