Renewable energy in El Salvador is competitive in the midst of the fuel crisis

El Salvador is consolidated as one of the countries in the region that bets the most on the generation of renewable energy, which represents a benefit in a scenario with high prices for fossil fuels.

Renewable energy costs fell last year in a scenario where supply chain challenges and rising raw material prices have yet to show their full impact on project costs.

According to a recent report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), nearly two-thirds, or 163 gigawatts (GW), of renewable energy installed globally last year had lower costs than renewables, the cheapest coal option among the G20 countries.

IRENA estimates that, given the current high prices of fossil fuels, the renewable capacity added in 2021 represents a benefit, since it would save about $55,000 million compared to the world value of power generation in 2022.

Francesco La Camera, General Director of IRENA, confirmed that renewable energy frees economies from the volatility of fuel prices and imports, curbs energy costs and improves market resilience, even more so if the current crisis continues. energetic.

In this same scenario, El Salvador is consolidated as one of the countries in the region that is most committed to the generation of renewable energy, thanks to the strategy of the government of President Nayib Bukele to diversify the energy matrix. Currently, due to the good management of resources, the country has managed to export energy to neighboring countries.

“We have worked under the Cuscatlán Plan, making historic changes, allowing, to date, 80% of the energy consumed by El Salvador to be renewable,” said the president of the Lempa River Hydroelectric Executive Commission (CEL), Daniel Álvarez, in a forum organized by the European Union.

The benefits of having more sources available include the stabilization of household rates, increased efficiency in business activity, environmental protection, and the creation of decent jobs.

 Statistics from the National Energy Council (CNE) indicate that 86.9% of the national energy matrix is injected with renewable sources, being hydroelectric (24.5%), geothermal (23.8%), liquefied natural gas (15.3%) and biomass (12.3%)the most important.

Renewables versus fuels

In this scenario, the IRENA study highlights that investments in renewable energy will continue to report huge dividends in 2022.

The agency assured that the high prices of coal and fossil gas that were registered in 2021 and continue this year, deeply deteriorated the competitiveness of fossil fuels and will make solar and wind energy even more attractive.

Precisely, they are two types of power generation that El Salvador has invested heavily in. Among those projects is the Venturs wind farm located in Metapán, Santa Ana, which involved an investment of $85.5 million and has an installed capacity to generate 54 megawatts through 15 wind turbines 120 meters high.

Another important project is the natural gas plant of the company Energía del Pacífico (EDP), located in Acajutla, Sonsonate, which had a private investment of $1,000 million in the country, generating hundreds of direct and indirect jobs.