CHILEAN HYDROPOWER PROJECT DEEMED UNFEASIBLE AS IS
A co-developer of the massive HidroAysen hydropower project in Chile said last week that the project will not move forward in its current state. The controversial project—a joint effort between companies Endesa Chile and Colburn involving the construction of dams on two of Patagonia’s rivers—had come to a halt in June, when a Chilean ministerial committee cancelled the permit that would have allowed construction to move forward. Propelled by strong opposition from environmentalists, the committee stated that plans for the project did not sufficiently provide for those who would be displaced by the project, nor did they adequately take into account damage to the environment and wildlife. Although the companies involved could choose to fight the decision in court, CEO Francesco Starace of Endesa parent company Enel SpA told reporters last Tuesday that the “project as it is can't go ahead, against the people, against the country.” Starace said that the companies would consider reformulating the project or quitting it entirely, but indicated that they would not press their case in court. For the full story, see http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/07/15/us-enel-chile-hydropower-idUKKBN0FK2HS20140715 and http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/06/10/us-chile-hidroaysen-idUSKBN0EL1WR20140610. Earlier: http://elr.info/international/international-update/chile-drops-plans-controversial-dam-project.