Brazil’s Estreito hydro project ahead of schedule for launch of operations

Brazil’s 1,087-MW Estreito hydro plant will launch commercial operations earlier than expected, a spokesperson at the mines and energy ministry reported.

The hydropower plant had been scheduled to come online in February 2011, but it now could be operational within the year, Business News Americas reported.

In 2008, a federal appeals court reversed a lower court ruling that suspended construction of the Estreito hydroelectric project.

The Estreito hydro project is being built on the Tocantins River on the border between Tocantins and Maranhao states.

The project is expected to cost 3.6 billion reais (US$1.97 billion), according to the ministry. Brazilian miner Vale, U.S. aluminum producer Alcoa, construction company Camargo Correa and European utility giant GDF Suez hold stakes in the project.

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