EDF Colombia and Refocosta, a forest management and timber development company under the Colombian conglomerate Barolem Group, will build a biomass power plant based on eucalyptus cultivation. The plant will be built in the province of Casanare in eastern Colombia, with an installed capacity of 25 megawatts and an annual generation capacity of over 200 gigawatt hours. All electricity generated will be supplied to the Colombian Petroleum Corporation (Ecopetrol).
According to Ecopetrol, the use of electricity derived from biomass power generation is expected to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by more than 70,000 tons per year, contributing to the company's goal of reducing CO2 emissions by 400,000 tons over the next three years, as announced in its 2023 business investment plan. The plant will contribute to this goal.
Jean-François Lebra, CEO of EDF Colombia, said, "This is EDF's first investment in Colombia. We look forward to working with Refocosta to develop additional projects that will contribute to the decarbonization of Colombia's energy sources, accelerate the energy transition, and combat climate change. Construction of the plant is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2023, with operations to begin in early 2025.
As of January 24, 2023, there were 29 biomass power projects registered with the UPME, with a total installed capacity of 381.57 MW. Twenty-five of the 29 projects have an installed capacity of 20 megawatts or less, and the EDF Colombia and Refocosta projects are relatively large for biomass power generation. In terms of development progress, 19 projects are in Phase 1 (preliminary feasibility study), 7 projects are in Phase 2 (feasibility study), and 3 projects are in Phase 3 (civil design).