Power’s back on following Friday blackouts due to shutdown of the Coca Codo hydro plant

Jun 21, 2024 | 0 comments

In social media messages late Friday, the National Energy Control Center (Cenace) announced that “Ecuador is back to full power.” The announcement followed a day of blackouts in some areas of the country due to the shutdown of the Coca Codo Sinclair hydroelectric plant earlier in the day.

Cenace said that electric generation at Coca Codo had resumed following cleaning operations at the plant.

High amounts of sediment in the intake pools at the Coca Coda Sinclair hydro plant has required the shutdown of operations.

On Friday morning, Cenace announced that Coca Coda, which had been operating at half capacity following heavy weekend rains, was shut down entirely at 4 a.m. Friday morning due to an increase of sedimentation in the intake pools that feed the turbines. “This was necessary to protect the generation equipment from damage,” Cenace said in a statement. “Cleaning is underway, but we cannot predict when it will be completed.”

Cenace said that electricity is being imported from Colombia but said it was not sufficient to replace lost generation at Coca Coda. Under normal operating conditions, Coca Coda generates about 25% of Ecuador’s electricity.

Cenace added that the three generation plants at the Mazar-Paute complex in Azuay Province are operating at near capacity, producing about 33% of the country’s electricity.

Several sectors of Cuenca experienced one- to two-hour blackouts Friday but most of the city was spared.

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