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Chile announces construction of first Green Hydrogen Plant


Green energy, Chile.
The facility will be located in Cabo Negro, 28 km. North of Punta Arenas

Juan Carlos Jobet, Minister of Energy, said that today an industry as important as copper is making its way. The project, based on the exceptional wind conditions, prevailing in the region, brings together national and foreign companies.

October, 2020.- 

   Green Hydrogen is climbing positions in the ranking of sustainable energies. Its importance lies in the fact that when hydrogen is burned, it only leaves behind water vapor, instead of the greenhouse gases that come from fossil fuels, which today are essential to reduce. The key is that it can be generated without producing any pollution, through electrolysis, separating the oxygen and hydrogen molecules, requiring only water and electricity. When done through clean sources, such as solar or wind energy, the process is totally “green”.

Enel Green Power Chile (EGP Chile), announced its purpose to participate with AME and possible partners ENAP, Siemens Energy and the automobile company Porsche, in the installation of a pilot plant for the production of green hydrogen through an electrolyzer powered by wind energy, in Cabo Negro, north of Punta Arenas, Magallanes Region.
The project is subject to the approval of the local authorities and the finalization of the financing structure. The facility is expected to start operating in 2022, making it the first plant of its kind to produce green hydrogen in Chile, as well as one of the largest in Latin America.

The announcement was made during an event with the participation of the Minister of Energy, Juan Carlos Jobet.

James Lee Stancampiano, General Manager of EGP Chile, said: “For Enel, Chile has always been a laboratory of innovation. Among the projects we have developed in this country are Diego de Almagro, the first large-scale solar plant in the country, the first bifacial photovoltaic panels in La Silla, the launch of Cerro Pabellon, the first geothermal plant in South America, the laboratory of wave power in Las Cruces, and the off-grid hybrid system in Ollag├╝e. Now, it is time to develop the potential of green hydrogen".

A project in Patagonia

  Patagonia stands out for having some of the best ground wind conditions in the world due to its proximity to Antarctica. This feature allows a constant generation of energy, key to position itself as a green hydrogen development center. In particular, the Magallanes Region seeks to diversify its energy matrix historically marked by oil and gas, taking advantage of the existing infrastructure to accelerate decarbonization through green hydrogen generated by the wind. 
On the other hand, the place, on the shores of the Strait of Magellan, represents an advantage if the product is to be exported to European markets. 

Green Hydrogen in Chile

Chile is emerging as one of the countries with the greatest potential for the production and export of green hydrogen in the world. According to the Chilean Ministry of Energy, up to 20% of the country's CO2 reduction by 2050 will be possible thanks to green hydrogen.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that Chile is capable of producing 160 million tons of green hydrogen per year, doubling current hydrogen demand and, according to Bloomberg's projections, the price of green hydrogen will be competitive with diesel within approximately less than 10 years.
Andres Roccatagliata, General Manager of ENAP (National Petroleum Company) expressed: “In these lands (Magallanes Region) oil was discovered more than 70 years ago. Now we are facing a new milestone, the search for new technologies, which will give a new economic boost to the region and, why not say it, to the entire country. At ENAP, we are confident that here, energy again will be produced for Magallanes and, being ambitious, for Chile and all the countries that benefit from this technology ”.