Electric power generation project: El Punto de la Oriental shopping center – Medellín.
Just as the Hass avocado is weighed in kilograms or soda for walks in liters, renewable energies such as solar plants are measured in kilowatt peaks (kWp). If only 1 kilowatt peak was installed for each inhabitant in Colombia, the same electrical energy that each person consumes in the year would be generated and, energetically speaking, we would have a “netted” country. For reference, in 2020 Germany exceeded 50 million kWp, which would be the necessary number of solar panels for this exercise.
What do we expect from renewable energies?
In the last 40 years, governments and private companies have been adding a pillar to their ethical and market strategies, focused on generating interest and involving society in the generation of renewable energy.
This effort has reached such a point that these initially alternative and non-conventional sources of electricity generation are progressively slipping into the queue until they are classified as the new conventional sources.
Gases that promote global warming and consequently deterioration of ecosystems , respiratory diseases, political wars, acid rain and social imbalance due to access to natural resources from day to day , are the badges for which we work to diversify the origin of energy based on a trilemma: obtaining and use in mutuality with the environment, access to the service and effective management of the service or security of supply.
In this space, we will go beyond simply strengthening the bank of facts that claim to demonstrate the impact of humans in accelerating global warming, understanding that there is a counterpart that exposes why this process inevitably takes place periodically and, the activity of man in this event, is as insignificant as the unsuccessful effort of Levi Strauss ‘s horses to break the famous pants.
At Azimut Energía, people gather who take human activity for granted as a factor accelerating the deterioration of the 510 million square kilometers where we live for x and y reason . From this foundational premise, job opportunities are derived that lead not only to financial compensation for the company, but also to ethical compensation for each of the teammates.
Believing in this premise, we have come developing different lines of business that address the same situation from perspectives with different scopes, technologies and impacts : starting with replacement of technologies that inefficiently consume energy, passing through a digital platform that makes a intelligent management of consumption through data analysis and finally, the theme that is developed here, the generation of electrical energy with non-conventional renewable sources (although we want to be part of the contributions that lead society to remove the word “no” that goes before “conventional”).
Although the initial premise for involving these technologies in the way electricity is generated is focused on separating hydrocarbons and large hydroelectric plants as the only production methods, a second need arises in parallel and that is the rise in energy prices.
An entire blog could be devoted to the factors that influence the variation in the price of electricity in the country, but particularly when we talk about renewables and, even more so, its self-generation, prominence is given to the fact that From the beginning of 2020 to the end of 2021, the price of energy has increased by about 16% on average.
We take 27 companies that sell electricity in the country and we evaluate month by month how the sale price of this service has been changing. “Everything became very expensive” is an expression that we hear on a daily basis in different contexts and that fits perfectly in the energy business.
Complementing the use of energy that comes from the national interconnected system with generation in the same place of consumption ( in situ ) helps to protect itself, depending on the size of the plant, partially or totally from the rise in energy prices in the country.
Other ways to generate electrical energy.
Although the beginning of the company was focused merely on the development of energy efficiency projects (reducing consumption through different technologies), the inclusion of energy generation projects has materialized a fundamental pillar of the company given that from this other approach pursues the same premise: reduce operating costs for customers and promote environmentally clean growth in companies.
With these electricity generation plants with renewable sources (solar and biomass) that Azimut has installed as of December 2021, every 40 minutes the necessary energy is generated to give a two-hour concert by The Police in a completely full stadium. The greenhouse gas emissions that it stops emitting are equivalent to 1.5% of the emissions generated by an entire city like Manizales.
The structure of this blog goes from the macro to the micro or from the general to the specific: to align concepts, we are going to begin by exposing the international starting point that would be the advance to the date of the different technologies , what they consist of, their way of operation , its differences and other aspects that allow having a first base of recognition of what is on the table at this time.
We will go through periodic notes that expose in a simple way how to make a pre-design of solar plants , we will explain why the premise that “renewables are more profitable than conventional ones”, we will recount the day-to-day life of an engineer in this area from when he opens the computer to draw up a plan until he has to sunbathe in the field all day because the plant does not turn on, we will expose the life of the panels after having fulfilled their function, the type of existing contracts in these projects and we will talk about how Azimut carried out the first project in Colombia to generate electricity with rice husks, in conjunction with companies from India and China.
Colombia, a territory with competitive advantages for the definitive adoption of renewable sources for the generation of electrical energy necessary in the country, has been adopting a legal framework that promotes this process. Therefore, we have faith that there will be work for many years accompanied by gigantic challenges.
As a starter for the next installment, I leave here the numbers that show that in the last decade in Colombia, the generation capacity of non-conventional renewable energy doubled.
Installed capacity of non-conventional renewable sources in Colombia.
Source. Own elaboration with information from (SER, 2021) and (Acolgen, 2021)
- They welcome (2021). Retrieved from https://www.acolgen.org.co/
- BE. (2021). Retrieved from https://ser-colombia.org/mercados-colombia/
Written by: Santiago Cataño.