- Install power plant in mountainous, rural location
- Compliance with customer’s rigorous safety and environmental requirements
- Requirement for uninterrupted power to ensure life-dependent systems
In 2012, Minera San Rafael, S.A., gained approval to develop a new silver mine in Guatemala. Initial plans for the Escobal mine included installation of a transmission line to provide electricity from the local power grid. However, permitting and right-of-way challenges for the line prompted Minera San Rafael to consider mobile, fast-track power solutions that would support mine’s growing power requirements as it transitioned from construction to operation. Additional challenges included the mountainous, rural terrain and opposition to the mine by the local population.
In 2013, APR Energy was awarded a contract to install and operate diesel power modules to initially provide 2-3MW required for mine construction. Once the mine was operational, APR Energy scaled up its power output to provide 15.5MW of stable, reliable electricity – a critical need for the miners working underground whose lives depend on water-pumping and ventilation systems. The company’s full-service solution includes plant operations and maintenance, which frees Minera San Rafael to focus on its core business. APR Energy’s solution also includes rigorous standards and training to ensure world-class occupational health, safety and environmental (HSE) practices.
The Escobal mine is the world’s second-largest silver producer, and APR Energy has been its sole source of electricity throughout its operation. In addition to providing reliable power, the company’s commitment to HSE best practices has complemented the customer’s efforts in these key areas. In 2015, Minera San Rafael presented APR Energy with its Safety Recognition Award. The plant also has had a positive impact in the community, as it is fully staffed by Guatemalans, and donations of construction materials, furniture and supplies have supported improvements for local schools.