President surprises coal-plant foes in Chile


The relief and joy that has reigned here since the rescue of 33 trapped miners makes it difficult to remember that not long ago, this northern Chilean city was the focus of angry protests. Prompting the demonstrations, which took place in Copiapó and in the Chilean capital of Santiago, were plans for a complex of six coal-fired power plants and a diesel-fueled plant 80 kilometers (50 miles) southeast of here. Experts say the US$4.4 billion, 2,350-megawatt Castilla complex, sponsored by Brazil’s MPX Energia, could supply up to one-seventh of Chile’s electricity as early as 2016. Nearly a dozen coal power-plant projects are planned or under discussion in Chile. A second one that sparked equally intense protests, a plant to... [Log in to read more]

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