The development, construction and operation of a 531 MW runof-river hydroelectric power plant approximately 50 kilometers east of Santiago, the capital of Chile. The Project will be a key generation facility for Chile and reduce electricity costs as well as greenhouse gas emissions in the country’s central interconnected grid, a system that has become increasingly reliant on coal and diesel generation plants.
The Project has been screened as Category A because potential impacts are diverse and potentially irreversible. In addition to impacts and risks associated with large construction and civil works (e.g., noise, dust, traffic, vehicle and equipment emissions, solid and hazardous waste management, and occupational health and safety), environmental concerns are related to tunneling activities such as noise, vibration and waste rock disposal; impacts on water quality due to construction works in river channels and contaminated run-off from waste rock piles; and potential impacts on terrestrial and aquatic biodiversity during construction and on aquatic biodiversity during operation as a result of reduced or diverted flow. Occupational health and safety risks associated with tunneling, such as the potential for cave-ins and collapse, and degraded air quality.
As of March 2020, the UN Committee on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (CESCR) is reviewing the impacts of the Alto Maipo Hydroelectric Project, which has put Chileans’ fundamental rights at risk. These include the rights to water, food, housing, health, and culture. Communities claim that they have never been adequately consulted, despite the fact that the project has jeopardized the environment in the area where they live and violated fundamental human rights for many years, raising grave concerns about the project’s impacts for more than a decade.
Loan, up to $250 million with a term of up to 20 years
Borrower: Alto Maipo SpA, owned by AES Gener (60%) and Antofagasta Minerals S.A., AMSA (40%)
US Sponsor: AES Gener S.A. (Chile), a subsidiary of AES Corporation (Virginia, USA)
Foreign Sponsor: Antofagasta plc. (UK), through Antofagasta Minerals S.A.(Chile), a wholly-owned subsidiary