By: Maria Gotti | Sustainability Projects and Practice Sharing Analyst at Enel | April 29th, 2016

Thanks to an investment of about 196 million US$, Enel Green Power completed and connected to the grid the new wind power plant of Dominica I, in the Mexican municipality of Charcas. This is the first wind farm in the State of San Luis Potosí with a total installed capacity of 100 MW. The plant generates up to 260 GW per year and will help avoid over 337 thousand tons of CO2 emissions in the atmosphere every year, which is equal to the pollution produced by a vehicle covering over 3 billion km.

To be coherent with the company’s Creating Shared Value approach, Dominica has a focus on sustainability since the laying of its foundations. Enel Green Power began in fact with a reforestation project of more than 180,000 local specimen to compensate for areas that were deforested during the construction of the wind farm. This had been required by the National Forestry and Enel Green Power performs this activity through a plan of "temporary employment" for people of the same community.

As part of the development of the local agricultural activities and business, three activities have been identified: production of ornamental cacti, harvesting escamoles (Maguey) and feeding livestock in dry seasons.

More in detail Enel Green Power worked with the community and engaged residents on improving these activities. To improve the quality and the amounts of the ornamental cacti produced in order to increase their value and the quantity sold on the market, EGP helped the community build a greenhouse and trained residents on how to produce and sell cacti at local level. These cacti are usually used for resale or allocated for industrial reforestation purposes in addition, in the course of the wind farm construction, more than 16 thousand specimens were removed to nearby habitat to protect them from damage. This initiative will save these cacti, thus maintaining the culture and landscape of the area.

As for the harvesting of escamoles, which is a pre‐Hispanic food source (ant larvae from the Liometopum apiculatum species), residents were trained on safe extraction  methodologies in order to decrease the ecological impact of harvesting and enable them to through this model to add significant economic value to the community and replicate this model/program in surrounding communities, to conserve the specimens that are endangered according to the Mexican law.

The “Molinos of Maguey” program aims at training both men and women on using nopal and maguey as supplementary food for livestock in times of drought which increases cattle survival as well as employment opportunities.  

Finally, the project has also set up a foundation to allocate funds for corporate social responsibility (CSR) to develop the two local schools with new infrastructures for their civic auditoriums. Collaboration with indigenous groups was also established to examine their priorities in terms of the natural landscape and community assets.

Dominica is also one of Enel Green Power’s first Sustainable construction sites. The “sustainable worksite” model solutions applied on the site include two solar panels for the generation of electricity to be used at the site, which cut the use of diesel-fueled generators and the emission of carbon dioxide during the construction stage. Also, household and worksite waste is separately collected and recycled and certain types of waste are temporarily stored in special insulated repositories to avoid soil contamination.

Clean energy, environmental protection, promotion of local entrepreneurship and support to education are numerous objectives for one single project and this is what Enel has achieved in Mexico.

VALUE FOR BUSINESS

Cost saving thanks to the training and technical assistance provided by the national forestry on the reforestation program and at the same time improving relations with the region, promoting skilled labor in order to attract new clients.

VALUE FOR THE STAKEHOLDERS

Reforest impacted areas and mitigate environmental impacts on flora and fauna providing new job opportunities as well as promoting technical training for populations residing in the areas. 

 

 

Project Fact Sheet - Una Mano Para la Vida.pdf