30% progress of Minas de Guascachaca wind power plant in Ecuador

A 30% advance has the construction of the Minas de Guascachaca Wind Power Plant, which will produce electricity with wind turbines. It is in the San Sebastián de Yuluc parish, in the Saraguro canton, in the province of Loja.

This wind farm will consist of wind turbines, which will produce an installed capacity of 50 megawatts, which will make this plant the largest in Ecuador with wind power.

The Electro Generating Company of Austro (Elecaustro) is in charge of this project, which can advantageously replace generation plants that use fossil fuels and cause pollution.
The area where this work is built is arid, with very little vegetation, and it is also characterized by dirt roads and soil eroded by water and wind.

It is about 84 kilometers (km) southwest of Cuenca by the Cuenca-Girón-Pasaje route, consisting of several relatively flat plateaus, oriented from south to north, separated by streams of different width and depth.

Antonio Borrero, general manager of Elecaustro, explained that they are currently in a bidding process for the implementation of what is called road three, which will arrive in San Sebastián de Yulu.

According to the manager, this will allow the construction of wind turbines, which in total are 15 and confirmed that it will be the largest in the country, with an investment close to 100,000,000 dollars.

According to Borrero, it is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2021 and its production will serve to power the interconnected national system, as it connects on the 138,000 volt (v) line, which connects Cuenca with Loja.

Each of the wind turbines, according to the designs, has a unit power of 3.3 mw, and an expected average annual gross output of 132.9 gigawatt-hour (GW.h).

As part of this intervention a bridge was built over the Jubones river, 50 meters (m) in length. There will also be access roads for each of the 15 platforms.

Rubén Salamea, electrical engineer and consultant, believes that it is necessary for the National Government to promote the construction of new wind units similar to this one to replace others, which use fuels and pollute.

According to Salamea, about 50% of the electrical energy produced in the country is done thermally, with some transformation technologies such as turbo steam.

Also with turbo gas (thermodynamic gas cycle) and with internal combustion engines (thermodynamic cycle Otto and diesel). The latter generate greenhouse gas that produces global warming.
The National Government aims to reach 93% of clean and renewable energy, with water, solar and wind energy resources.
Oscar Medina, architect and master in renewable energies, explained that according to the Electricity Regulation and Control Agency (Arconel), Ecuador has 51.78% renewable energy, mainly hydraulic.

According to Medina, this is due to the National Government’s policy, which was announced in 2010, for the change of the energy matrix for the production of electricity with the force of water, to stop using fuels, which pollute.

He pointed out that although of the eight hydroelectric plants offered by the Executive only three work: Manduriacu, Sopladora and Coca Codo Sinclair, this has been an important advance for the country in terms of environmental conservation.