Commissioning of turbines at Brazil’s 3,750-MW Jirau nearing halfway point

Jirau Hydropower Project

Nearly half of the 50 turbine units at Brazil’s 3,750-MW Jirau hydropower project have been commissioned, according to a report released this week by operator GDF Suez SA of France.

The report said 24 of the plant’s 75 MW turbines are now in operation, with another pair synchronized. GDF Suez expects 33 of the units to be commissioned by June. reported that Brazil’s Agencia Nacional de Energia Electricqa (Aneel) had approved the commercial operation of Jirau’s first turbine in September 2013.

The project has the distinction of being the largest renewable plant recognized by the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) as a Clean Development Mechanism.

Jirau and its sister plant, the 3,568-MW Santo Antonio, are part of Brazil’s 6.6-GW Rio Madeira complex. Jirau operator GDF Suez SA and Santo Antonio operators Eletrobras and Cemig were ordered to redo environmental impact studies for the plants last March on the basis that the projects’ dams might be causing flooding.

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Michael Harris formerly was Editor for

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