60-MW Aguacate hydropower facility online after five-year rehab

The Dominican Republic’s state-run hydropower utility, Egehid, brought its 60-MW Aguacate hydroelectric facility online today after an extensive rebuild that took the unit out of service for five years.

The hydroelectric facility was built in 1992 with a 52-MW capacity, and is still the largest and highest-producing dam or facility in the Caribbean. The rehab project boosted capacity to 60-MW.

Hydroworld.com reported that bids were open for the rehabilitation project in 2009 in an effort to repair damage sustained during Tropical Storm Noel in 2007. Egehid granted the contract to Genermex and Andrade Gutierrez.

The rehabilitation project’s US$17.0 million price tag is expected to increase by approximately 200 gigawatt hours per year.

In related news, the Dominican Republic’s hydraulic resources institute is in the process of rehabilitating several other dams affected by Tropical Storm Noel and Olga, including 98-MW Jiguey dam, Maguaca Dam, Cacuey Dam, and 113-MW Tavera Dam. Work was solicited in November for this work. 

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