Humberto Armas, director of Regulation and Marketing of Empresa de Generación Huallaga (EGH) tells us how the third largest hydroelectric plant in the country has faced the pandemic.
How has Empresa de Generación Huallaga (EGH) dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic so far?
Before the official quarantine and remote work ordered by the national authorities, EGH had already assumed and implemented this form of work, with the full voluntary agreement of all its members.
Likewise, EGH reinforced and adapted shifts. In this way, strict entry and exit controls were implemented for plant personnel, with door-to-door mobility for each of its members, regardless of whether it was their family destination Huánuco, Lima, or any other province in the country. This measure, among others, has been strictly complied with and is being maintained, avoiding potential contagion in public transportation.
For EGH so far the results are very satisfactory, having met its goals to a large extent, and we hope to continue meeting the commitments of required electricity production.
This challenge that has been presented to us, it is possible to face it thanks to the professional quality of all its members, who with a high spirit of solidarity have been able to successfully face this pandemic. Let us remember that our sector is strategic for the country and we cannot stop. With the energy of Chaglla, it is possible to conserve food, use computers and light the homes of Peru.
From what I understand they were operational during the quarantine. What were your main challenges in these months?
Following the measures adopted by the management and the mystique of its members, highly committed to the organization and the country, EGH and Chaglla have been operatively available throughout the quarantine and the national health crisis, with very good standards. (close to 100%) availability of clean energy generation for the electricity supply of the National Interconnected Electric System (SEIN).
The main challenge has been to adapt quickly to the working conditions imposed by the pandemic, which still keeps us on our toes. To this, it is necessary to add our response capacity, since we must meet all supply requirements in a timely and efficient manner.
We provide a high-quality product. It is worth remembering that we not only receive the demand for electricity from the System's Economic Operation Committee (COES) but also from the Secondary Frequency Regulation Service (RSF), which can only be supplied by generating companies with the technology of tip, like the one of EGH.
When you have a product, in this case, electricity, you can provide the COES with that supply to maintain the stability of the system. We must remember that two of CH Chaglla's generating units, each with 225 MW, are the largest hydroelectric units in the country. We also have a third, smaller 6 MW generating unit that uses the ecological flow at the foot of the dam, to provide auxiliary services and supply to the Chaglla Hydroelectric Complex camp.
Another challenge successfully faced by EGH in the last month has been the major annual maintenance of HPP Chaglla, which consists of a reservoir with a 211 m dam. high (equivalent to two buildings of the Westin Hotel, one above the other) and a mass of rock and an impregnable concrete face, three large spillways for the control of the reservoir, a 14.3 km adduction tunnel, two powerhouses, and a transmission line of double triplet and 127 km in length, which connects the Chaglla substation at 900 meters above sea level and the Paragsha Expansion substation in Cerro de Pasco, no less than 4,400 meters above sea level.
The high availability of HPP Chaglla in these months is proof of the quality of its members at all levels, equipment, and infrastructure, which guarantee users an optimal electricity service nationwide.
How were the health security protocols applied?
For EGH, the main value of the company is the integrity and well-being of its members. With foresight, even before the official declaration of the crisis, the management of the company, with the full agreement and satisfaction of the workers and with compliance with all the measures dictated by the government, established remote work, the reinforcement of teams, rotations of extended operations and maintenance shifts, duplication of health service teams in the camp, strict compliance with the health protocols established by its headquarters and the authority, as well as strict measures to prevent the virus from entering the plant and its facilities, initially canceling the access of third parties and later accepting the entry of only the indispensable ones.
The Chaglla hydroelectric plant does not present COVID-19 infected to date.Humberto Armas
All this included, previously, compliance with strict two-week quarantines and serological tests, controls through daily health surveys to all members and associates, both in Chaglla and in Lima, for early detection of possible infections.
It should be noted that HPP Chaglla has been classified as a national strategic infrastructure for the energy and mines sector, so that the disposition of EGH's senior management is to keep it always operational, with due care for its people, both at the plant and in Lima.
The good news is that CH Chaglla has not been infected with COVID-19 to date, and will continue to make every effort to stay that way.
What are your next goals as a company?
Given the high reserve of generation supply existing in the SEIN, increased as a result of the reduction in demand due to the restrictive measures dictated by the authority, it is imperative to compete with greater emphasis in the national electricity market for the benefit of stakeholders, including New customers.
Likewise, depending on the evolution of the national electricity market and the economic reactivation in progress, we will evaluate new investment opportunities that contribute to the business strengthening and energy security of the country.
Likewise, we plan to expand the management of socio-environmental sustainability in the area of a direct influence of HPP Chaglla, through the projects developed by the communities with the support of EGH, such as fish farms, stocking fingerlings, beekeeping, segregation, and recycling of solids recovered in the reservoir, among other local production processes with the objective of comprehensive improvement within our social responsibility policy, according to the fees established by the parent company.
Are you planning to change or strengthen your business image?
In general, the corporate image of a company is a direct result of its management, its commercial behavior, adherence and compliance with current regulations, sustainability, and socio-environmental responsibility.
EGH is recognized by various national and foreign institutions for the conception, construction, financial development scheme, and socio-environmental sustainability of the Chaglla Hydroelectric Power Plant. For example, the International Hydroelectric Association - IHA (for its acronym in English), based in London, has certified CH Chaglla with high scores in 20 axes of evaluation of the benefits of this production unit. An important recognition.
It is in the interest of the new administration that Empresa de Generación Huallaga S.A. be known as it is, a clean, integral, and transparent electric power generation company, with a highly qualified team, committed to the country, socially and environmentally responsible, and that is part of a very solvent group in technical, economic-financial aspects, research of cutting-edge technologies and energy innovation, such as China Three Gorges Corp. (CTG), which is the largest hydroelectric generator in the world.
Is Generación Huallaga ready to provide the energy that Peru needs for economic reactivation? What steps have you taken to achieve this?
The Huallaga Generation Company is prepared to continue providing its electricity generation corresponding to the 456 MW of its installed capacity, turning the waters of the Huallaga river, when the COES requires it; since, as has been pointed out, this is possible based on a priority care of its human capital, as well as the corresponding preventive-predictive maintenance, through tailored structured supports, such as Engeman. Likewise, its administrative and financial-accounting functions have enhanced its management through the use of the SAP Platform.
One of EGH's priorities is to always be available to meet the dispatch requirements of the COES infusion of its operational and administrative principles of the SEIN wholesale market; as well as adequately cover their PPA and related contracts.
So much so that CH Chaglla has completed its major maintenance for 2020, both in the plant and in the double circuit transmission line, to be ready and cover the expected increases in demand that should occur with the economic reactivation, after a semester negative for the SEIN due to the drop in demand, not necessarily due strictly to the demands of the pandemic, but due to the isolationist measures adopted to control it.
In any case, EGH, with the internal measures adopted, is ready with its HPP Chaglla to meet the recovery of electricity demand that we expect will grow adequately and significantly to reduce the high efficient reserve margins existing in the system. Big mining, big industry, electro-mobility, and authority have the floor.
What challenges do you have as a company for the remainder of 2020 and 2021?
The challenges for any consolidated generating company are to maintain an excellent relationship with the market in which it operates.
At this time, an unthinkable challenge a few months ago for the remainder of 2020 and 2021 is to keep company staff healthy and motivated. The environment is becoming riskier every day and security measures must be constantly innovated, without lowering our guard. There are daily meetings for O&M management and coordinated inter-managerial actions, which allow immediate actions to be taken, without delay.
The environment becomes riskier every day and security measures must be constantly innovated, without lowering our guard.Humberto Armas
For this, it is important to maintain the high levels of availability of the generation in HPP Chaglla, based on the full satisfaction and safety of its members at work, based on good work motivation, through continuous improvement with useful training programs. and good internal relations.
About China Three Gorges Corp.
Let's talk about shareholders What is CTG Corp.?
China Three Gorges Corp., known by its acronym CTG, is the world's largest hydroelectric company. Its people are considered with priority as the most valuable asset of the company. Among its core values are dedication, responsibility, innovation, harmony. CTG is a world-class renewable energy group for green development. It operates in 47 countries with around 90 contracts underway, investment and consulting underway in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas.
As of December 2019, CTG's total assets reached CNY 835.6 billion or US$ 118 billion. It has a workforce of 35,000 people, including overseas that number 9,241 people. The total installed capacity is 131.2GW (about 10 times Peru's total capacity) and the annual power generation is 289.5TWh. The annual growth rate of production is 4.86%.
In 2016, CTG became the first Chinese company to enter the global offshore wind market with the purchase of 80% of Meerwind Wind Park from Blackstone. Since December 2018, CTG has been involved in the Moray project in the UK, entering the world's largest offshore wind market.
In 2019, CTG's clean energy generation equaled 187.8 million tonnes of CO2 emission reductions.
Empresa de Generación Huallaga S.A. (EGH) with its CH Chaglla was acquired by CTG Corp. in a prolonged international private auction, in which more than a dozen economic groups and global energy companies participated. It was a transparent private contest in which the most interested one won.
China Three Gorges Corporation is committed to the development of Peru with EGH and its other investments. The most recent has been the purchase of Luz del Sur from the North American company Sempra, in March of this year, with the approval of Indecopi.
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