Brazil’s EPE identifies locations for 15 pumped storage hydropower plants

Empresa de Pesquisa Energetica (EPE) in Brazil, the federal energy planning company, has identified 15 possible locations for pumped storage hydropower plants in Rio de Janeiro state, totaling 21,109 MW.

According to BNamericas, EPE conducted the study to find places with favorable topographical conditions to support plans for the country’s power capacity expansion and the definition of regulations. So far, Brazil does not have a regulatory framework for this type of hydroelectric facility.

EPE said such units could help to compensate energy load variations in the system, which will grow as the share of intermittent renewables in the energy matrix increases. The company’s decennial power expansion plan includes estimations that have Brazil needing 13,200 MW of complementary capacity by 2027 to compensate the intermittency of other sources.

“The increasing participation of non-controllable sources (renewables) and the end of the extension of hydroelectrics with regulable reservoirs might decrease the system’s capacity to supply demand peaks,” the study says.

EPE will conduct further studies to estimate the costs of implementing these projects.

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