Pampa power station

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{{#badges:CoalSwarm|Navbar-Brazilcoal}}Pampa power station, also known as Pampa Sul coal plant or Miroel Wolowski coal plant (UTE Pampa Sul or UTE Miroel Wolowski in Portuguese) is a 340- to 640-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant in Candiota, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.


The map below shows the plant under construction in Candiota, RS, Brazil.

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A project of Tractebel Energia SA, the Pampa plant languished for many years in the shadow of Tractebel's larger Seival power plant.[1] However, with the sale of Seival to MPX Energia in November 2010 [2] and President Dilma's March 2013 decision to re-open Brazil's energy auctions to coal plants [3], Pampa got a new lease on life. As of August 2013 companies from China, Spain and Korea had expressed interest in placing construction bids. [4]

While the project met all the licensing requirements for inclusion in Brazil's August and December 2013 energy auctions, management ultimately declined to participate, citing both auctions' unviably low ceiling prices per KWh.[5][6] However, higher prices in the November 2014 auction encouraged Tractebel to participate, and the Pampa power station emerged as the lone successful bidder for a coal-fired project. Plans call for construction of the plant to begin in the first half of 2015, with a completion date no later than December 2018. Starting in 2019, the R$1.8 billion project is expected to generate 340 MW annually over a 25 year period.[7]

In April 2015, the Brazilian news site Valor Econômico cited statements from Tractebel's CFO Eduardo Sattamini indicating that Tractebel has plans for a second unit that would raise the Pampa plant's capacity to 640 MW. The report speculated that Tractebel might bid for increased capacity at Brazil's April 30 national energy auction[8], but Tractebel did not appear on the official list of bidders published by ANEEL (Brazil's energy regulation authority)[9] and no new coal projects were approved in the April 30 auction.[10]

In June 2015, Tractebel announced that Brazil's national environment agency IBAMA had issued a permit allowing construction to begin at the Pampas plant site. The plant was reported as 340 MW. Initial work was expected to begin during the first two weeks of July, with completion of the plant now projected for January 2019.[11]

As of 2016, construction work was already underway. Between May and December 2016, Tractebel's website announced completion of the pedestal base for the plant's turbine generator[12] and initial work on the boiler[13], electrical transmission lines, a 4.17km conveyor belt system[14] and a 200m chimney.[15]

In August 2017, two years after construction began, Tractebel representative Hugo Roger Stamm announced that 50% of Unit I’s structures were complete, including the transmission line and most of the conveyor belt system, and that the plant was on track to begin operational testing in the second half of 2018, with commercial electricity production to begin in January 2019.[16] In January 2018, Tractabel announced that construction was 75% complete and that the total cost of the project was now R $2.5 billion.[17]

In August 2017, press reports cited the 300MW Pampa Sul II project as one of four possible coal-fired contenders in Brazil’s upcoming A-6 energy auction.[18] However, there were ultimately no successful bids from coal projects in the December 2017 auction, with the Brazilian government granting virtually all new energy contracts to wind and natural gas-fueled projects instead.[19]

In April 2018, as part of its plan to decarbonise its portfolio, Engie attempted to sell the Pampa Sul project and its Jorge Lacerda power station to Contour Global but the sale fell through over a disagreement on the projects' valuation.[20] In September 2018 it was reported that China’s State Power Investment Corp (SPIC) was in talks with Engie SA to purchase Pampa Sul.[21] In January 2019 Engie gave a planned commissioning date of May 2019 or June 2019 for Unit 1, and announced that it would not try to sell the plant until it was commissioned.[22]

Unit 1 was commissioned in May 2019.[23]

As of June 2019 there has been no further news about developing the second unit proposed in April 2015, and this unit appears to be cancelled. Unit 2 participated in the October 2019 A-6 energy auction but did not enter into any purchasing agreements.[24]

Project Details

  • Sponsor: Tractebel
  • Parent company: GDF Suez/Engie
  • Location: Candiota, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
  • Coordinates: -31.549407, -53.682978 (exact)
  • Status:
    • Unit 1: Operating; Unit 2: Cancelled
  • Gross Capacity:
    • Unit 1: 345 MW
    • Unit 2: 300 MW
  • Type:
  • Projected in service:
    • Unit 1: 2019
    • Unit 2: Cancelled
  • Coal Type:
  • Coal Source: CRM mine, Candiota
  • Source of financing:

Articles and resources


  1. "Tractebel exporta energia ao Uruguai,", Ambiente Ja, April 2008.
  2. "MPX adquire projeto da Tractebel,", MSN Dinheiro, November 2010.
  3. "Dilma agora quer o carvão,", Jornal do Povo, March 2013.
  4. "Novos investidores chineses visitam Mina de Candiota,", Companhia Riograndense de Mineração, August 2013.
  5. "Consórcios e empresas rearticulam projetos de térmicas a carvão no Rio Grande do Sul,", Zero Hora, September 2013.
  6. "Preço no leilão marcado para dezembro joga água fria na exploração do pré-sal gaúcho,", Zero Hora, November 2013.
  7. "Confirmada nova usina em Candiota,", Jornal Minuano, November 28, 2014.
  8. "Tractebel considers selling extension of Pampa Sul Coal Plant,", Valor International, April 28, 2015.
  9. "RESOLUÇÃO HOMOLOGATÓRIA Nº 1868,", ANEEL, March 30, 2015.
  10. "Leilão A-5 contrata 14 usinas e garante investimentos de R$6 bi no país,", EPE, April 30, 2015.
  11. "UTE Pampa Sul tem licença emitida pelo Ibama,", Tractebel Energia news release, June 24, 2015.
  12. "Concretagem do pedestal do turbo gerador da UTE Pampa Sul (Miroel Wolowski) é realizada,", Tractebel Energia news release, May 23, 2016.
  13. "Montagem da caldeira da UTE Pampa Sul (Miroel Wolowski) começa a ser realizada,", Tractebel Energia news release, August 11, 2016.
  14. "Atividades na linha de transmissão e correia transportadora de carvão da UTE Pampa Sul (Miroel Wolowski),", Tractebel Energia news release, October 24, 2016.
  15. "Chaminé da UTE Pampa Sul (Miroel Wolowski) começa a ser concretada,", Tractebel Energia news release, December 6, 2016.
  16. "Obra da UTE Pampa Sul completa dois anos com mais de 50% das estruturas concluídas,", Jornal Minuano, August 29, 2017.
  17. Usina Pampa Sul está com 75% das obras concluídas - Jornal do Comércio, Jornal do Comercio, Jan. 25, 2018
  18. "Projetos a carvão são confirmados em leilão,", Jornal do Comércio, August 8, 2017.
  19. "Leilão A-6 viabiliza 3,8 GW e R$ 13,9 bilhões em novos investimentos," CanalEnergia, December 20, 2017
  20. Negociacao para venda da usina pampa sul nao avanca, Journal Minuano, Apr. 13, 2018
  21. Deals of the day-mergers and acquisitions, Reuters, Sep. 5, 2018
  22. Engie will only sell Pampa South upon completion, Jornal do Comércio, Jan. 15, 2019
  23. [ "Bancada do carvão renasce no Congresso com apoio do governo Bolsonaro" Leia mais em: Copyright © 2019, Gazeta do Povo. Todos os direitos reservados.], Gazeta De Povo, Jun. 27, 2019
  24. Minas e Energia quer viabilizar financiamento do BNDES para usinas a carvão, epbr, Oct. 18, 2019

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