Manduriacu, the first of eight hydroelectric dams currently being built in Ecuador, has been officially inaugurated. With an investment of US$227 million and straddling the provinces of Imbabura and Pichincha, Manduriacu has a total installed energy capacity of 65 megawatts.
Engineer at the dam Mariela Quineto said “Now that we have inaugurated the first of eight hydroelectric dams we have renewable energy in our country, and it is fulfilling to see this as an Ecuadorean, and as somebody coming from the province of Esmeraldas, to be able to also contribute to this future planning for the country.”
Creating some 2,450 jobs, an estimated 250,000 families will directly benefit from the energy provided by the dam. Once fully functioning, the potential of Manduriacu will reduce CO2 emissions by about 180,000 tons annually.
“Thanks to this, we will be able to satisfy the demand that we are going to consume in our homes, in our industries, 90 percent will come from renewable sources that do not contaminate the environment. That are economical. That come from nature,” said Minister of Electricity and Renewable Energy Esteban Albornoz Vintimilla at the inauguration of the dam.
Manduriacu is expected to save the state approximately US$80 million annually in gas imports, representing greater energy sovereignty for the Ecuadorean state.
Speaking to the crowds at the inauguration of Manduriacu, President Rafael Correa said “The hydroelectric project of Manduriacu is wonderful. Let's keep our spirits up, everything except our hope can be taken. We will keep moving forward with clean energy, with renovated happiness, with sovereignty, with liberty and dignity. This revolution does not stop for anything, and nobody. Long live the light Manduriacu will give us!”
Manduriacu with the other seven hydroelectric dams expected to be inaugurated next year, will generate approximately 2,765 megawatts of energy, saving Ecuador about US$3 billion annually in energy imports. Directly creating over 11,500 jobs, the national government has expressed the hope that these dams will help Ecuador move away from being an oil-based economy, and eventually allow the country to become an energy exporter.