Winner: Huemul Renewable Portfolio
Mainstream Renewable Power is changing the face of electricity generation in Chile with one of the world’s most innovative green energy projects.
The Irish developer is in the midst of building out its 1,350MW Andes Renovables platform that combines wind and solar plants distributed across Chile.
The company closed financing in August 2020 for the project’s second phase, known as the Huemul Portfolio, raising $620 million in debt out of a total Capex of $993 million. It was one of the largest debt financings for renewable energy globally in 2020, and involved a consortium of lenders including CaixaBank, DNB Bank, IDB Invest, KfW IPEX-Bank, MUFG, Santander Chile and SMBC.
The scope of the financing and the innovative approach to the energy platform won Mainstream the Renewable Energy Financing of the Year award.
“The financing for the Huemul Portfolio allows us to build out our renewable energy projects in Chile and continue with our commitment to deliver clean energy at scale. It signals the confidence of the market in our strategy and the work we are doing to build out this portfolio,” CEO Mary Quaney tells LatinFinance.
What sets Mainstream’s approach apart from others is the use of different energy sources – wind and solar power – and the location of the projects. Quaney says that the hybrid approach is an important feature of the project’s development in Chile.
“The assets are diversified very carefully geographically as well as by technology. The hybridized portfolio provides a more aggregated generation profile. It is an innovative approach and we are doing it at scale, which let us close the financing at a very difficult time in the Covid-19 pandemic,” she says.
Huemul will add 632MW of renewable energy to the Chilean grid through five assets, including three wind farms and two solar PV projects. Mainstream’s initial Condor project, with $520 million in financing that closed in 2019, includes 571MW in wind and solar projects. A third phase, Copihue, will add close to 150MW with one wind farm. $182 million in financing for it closed in July.
When completed in 2022, Mainstream’s assets will provide a substantial chunk of Chile’s non-conventional general capacity, which stood at 7,338MW in July 2021, according to the National Energy Commission.
Huemul’s five assets will generate enough power for 781,000 homes and will displace more than 720,000 tons of CO2 emissions annually.
Mainstream Renewable Power
DNB, SMBC (Modelling Bank), IDB Invest, KFW Ipex Bank, CaixaBank, MUFG , Santander
Milbank, Shearman & Sterling, Morales & Besa
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