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President launches construction of Mexico's 750-MW La Yesca

Mexico President Felipe Calderon Hinojosa launched construction of the 750-MW La Yesca hydroelectric project in ceremonies January 22 on the Santiago River in Mexico's Jalisco State.

Calderon called La Yesca the most important hydroelectric infrastructure project of his government, putting Mexico at the vanguard of Latin American infrastructure development. He noted the 220-meter-tall concrete-faced rockfill dam will be one of the tallest of its type and 34.5 meters taller than the 750-MW El Cajon project, which began operation in 2007. (HNN 6/4/07)

The president said the project represented an investment of 8 billion pesos (US$730.4 million) and will create 10,000 jobs. In addition to generating electricity from a renewable, environmentally friendly resource, the project is to include social projects in the areas of health, education, communications, and reforestation.

Mexico's Comision Federal de Electricidad awarded a contract in September 2007 to a consortium led by Ingenieros Civiles Asociados (ICA) to build La Yesca. The consortium also includes Promotora e Inversora Adisa, La Peninsular Compania Constructora, and Constructora de Proyectos Hidroelectricos.

Russian equipment supplier Power Machines won a contract to supply turbine-generators and other equipment. (HNN 9/12/07) The company said it would deliver two 375-MW hydropower turbines and other hydro-mechanical and electrical equipment. It is to manufacture, deliver, and install the equipment from 2008-2012.

In addition to the dam, La Yesca includes a reservoir of 2.39 billion cubic meters and an underground powerhouse.

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