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Panama promotes diversification of its energy mix

About 81 percent of Panama's total electricity generation will come from renewable sources in 2021, up from less than 5 percent in 2013, Panama's Star newspaper reported. According to the Inter-American Development Bank, Panama has averaged 69 percent of its electricity generation from renewable sources over the past four years, higher than the regional average.

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In recent years, the Panamanian government has been actively developing renewable energy and diversifying its energy mix. According to the data, as of April 2022, the proportion of electricity supply in Pakistan is 45% hydropower, 26% thermal energy, 11% solar energy, 10% natural gas, 7% wind energy, and 1% biomass energy. In 2021, the Pakistani government launched a new comprehensive development plan for the power sector, vigorously developing clean energy such as water, wind, solar and natural gas, and aiming to replace thermal power plants with clean energy by the end of 2023.

In March, the ground was broken on a new gas-fired power plant on Telfers Island, near the port of Cologne. The $1 billion project is expected to be operational in early 2024, with 670 megawatts of generating capacity. Panamanian President Cortisso said at the groundbreaking ceremony that the project is of strategic significance for Panama's energy development and structural optimization, and will create more than 3,000 direct jobs and a large number of indirect jobs.

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In addition to water and electricity resources, Panama is also rich in light resources, which are used effectively for about 1600 hours per year. In recent years, the Pakistani government has increased investment in the photovoltaic sector and the number of photovoltaic users has grown rapidly. From June 2019 to March 2022, the number of rooftop photovoltaic users increased by nearly two times, and the installed capacity increased by 70 percent. The Icakos photovoltaic plant in Chiriqui Province, which became operational in February 2019, has a generating capacity of 88.75 megawatts and can meet the needs of 49,000 homes. Panama's National Secretary of Energy Ricardo Rivera said that the promotion of photovoltaic technology will help Panama achieve energy independence and energy security. Relevant government departments will jointly implement incentive policies, further simplify application procedures for solar power equipment installation, and promote project financing and technology research and development.

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"Renewable energy is the future of the energy industry." Between 2018 and 2021, Panama-based International Energy Group used clean energy to generate nearly 350 million kilowatt-hours of electricity, equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of 121,000 homes, said Hernandez, the group's commercial marketing director. At the same time, carbon dioxide emissions were reduced by 169,000 tons, equivalent to the total emissions of about 60,000 cars.


The analysis pointed out that in the past, Panama mainly relied on imports of fossil fuels, which were greatly affected by price fluctuations in the international market, and the cost of residential and commercial electricity was relatively high. The implementation of the new comprehensive power sector development plan will not only contribute to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050 but also gradually reduce the real cost of electricity for households and businesses.

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