March 28, 2013 - The Inter-American Development Bank has agreed to loan Spain's Solarpack Corp. Tecnologica $41.4 million to develop three photovoltaic-solar projects in Chile's Atacama desert as the nation seeks to diversify its energy supply.
The plants will have 26.5 megawatts of capacity and supply power to mining companies Cia. Minera Dona Ines de Collahuasi SCM and Corp. Nacional del Cobre de Chile, the Washington-based lender said today in a statement.
Chile is seeking to more than double the contribution of renewable energy to its power supply over the next decade, according to the statement. The nation got about half its electricity from fossil fuels including coal, oil and natural gas in 2020, the International Energy Agency, said on its website.
"This project has a lot of upside," Jean-Marc Aboussouan, chief of the infrastructure division of the IDB's structured and corporate finance department, said in the statement. "It helps reduce the country's carbon footprint and is in line with the priorities of both Chile and the bank."
Half of the funds will be furnished from the IDB's own capital and half will come from the Canadian Climate Fund for the Private Sector in the Americas, which is administered by the bank, according to the statement.
Chile's mining industry consumes about 18 percent of the nation's power, according to the statement.