Enel Green Power’s Cerro Pabellon plant in Chile receives Seal of Excellence

Cerro Pabellon geothermal power plant, Chile (source: ENAP)
Alexander Richter 4 Oct 2017

Enel Green power receives award by the Chilean Minister of the Environment for the camp of the geothermal power plant at Cerro Pabellon in Chile for its ecological footprint which focuses on the quantification, reduction and neutralization of greenhouse gases.

The Chilean Minister of the Environment has awarded the geothermal plant’s camp for its ecological footprint which focuses on the quantification, reduction and neutralization of greenhouse gases.

Already at the top of the charts for being the first geothermal plant in South America and the first in the world built 4,500 metres above sea level, Cerro Pabellón, in Ollagüe in the Chilean Atacama Desert, has received another important recognition. The Ministry of the Environment in Santiago de Chile has awarded the prefabricated structures located 25 km from the geothermal plant with the “Seal of Excellence”, part of the Huella Chile program.

A series of actions aimed at improving the camp’s ecological footprint via the quantification, reduction and neutralization of greenhouse gases through mechanisms working to reduce carbon and water footprints and waste production, helped to bring about this result

The commitment to reducing Co2 is consistent with the unprecedented construction of a geothermal plant with the goal of producing renewable energy and adding to the diversification of Chile’s energy mix.

“We are proud to receive this national recognition of excellence for our commitment to reducing greenhouse gases, using water sustainably and reducing waste in our camp. I am very grateful for the effort and cooperation of Andrés Wolff (Site Manager) and Mario Concha (HSEQ Coordinator) and their teams in the development of this initiative.” – José Muñoz Arias, Business Development & Sustainability for EGP Chile.

A greener footprint

International indicators of ecological footprints formed the basis of the calculations carried out. The results show that the camp reduced the amount of greenhouse gases it was producing by almost 50% as measured through August 2017. This is also because of initiatives made to promote more sustainable mobility. For example, for those who commuted from home to work with additional passengers in the car, were able to win an award and contributed to the well-being of the area as well.

Water by the drop

For water conservation, aerators or flow reducers were installed on the taps in the toilets and kitchen. These are simple devices that insert air to reduce the amount of water used without reducing water pressure. Considering that 6.2% of the water used in local areas is what comes from the taps, this system has allowed waste to be halved by reducing consumption by 3.2%.

“Some of the industrial water, once it has been treated and made drinkable, is reused for wetting roads.”

Flowers that grow from waste

The sustainable actions do not end there. A complete waste management system was created that gives rubbish new life in other forms. EGP participated in the recycling programme of the green city of Calama with 1 tonne of plastic bottles, paper and cardboard. Locals also use recycled wood (pallets or mixed wood), to make flower boxes and real furniture. Thanks to our partner, the NGO Sembra. 75 tonnes of wood that would have gone to the dump now decorates the camp and the local community areas. EGP also dedicated eight cubic metres of compost to fertilise the plants at our camp, donating the rest to local communities to cultivate their land, making Chile even greener.

Source: Enel Green Power