GSEP to integrate advanced electrification technologies to Uruguay's grid and increase profitability of dairy sector

February 23, 2021

GSEP has launched one of the first project integrating batteries to the national power grid in Uruguay, which consists in the installation of distributed energy resource (DER) systems using photovoltaic panels, batteries and remote monitoring technologies in one typical dairy farm in the Colonia Delta community. The project also includes the installation of solar panels supplying electricity to an additional farm and five public buildings of the community.

As Uruguay has just recently authorized the integration of batteries to the grid, the project aims at creating a learning experience for the Uruguayan power utility (UTE) leading to broader integration of batteries coupled with renewables to the grid and strengthened energy security in the country.

The project also aims at reducing the farm’s operating costs. The electricity required to produce milk is one of the highest costs for farmers today. Based on the billing history of Colonia Delta farms, the proposed DER systems could produce up to 90% of their annual energy consumption and lower energy bills by up to 70%.

One-third of Uruguay’s dairy farms are family-owned, low-production businesses with limited access to investment capital, land and technology, that operate in a highly competitive, international industry. The pilot project aims at leveling the playing field for these smaller family businesses

The energy savings created by the integration of these technologies could result in an increased profitability and competitiveness for Uruguay’s agricultural sector, which plays a central role in the country’s economy.

The project is funded by GSEP with expertise from member companies Hydro-Québec and Enel X and realized in collaboration with UTE and the Intendencia de San José.

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