Brazilian power generation company Eneva has announced the start of commercial operation of the 837MWp Futura I Solar Complex in Bahia state, Brazil.

Located in the municipality of Juazeiro, the solar energy generation complex comprises over 1.4 million photovoltaic (PV) panels spread across more than 1,600ha.

The Futura I Solar Complex has 22 PV plants and is expected to have sufficient capacity to provide clean energy to over 1.7 million people.

Test operation of the PV plants at the solar complex was gradually started in April 2023.

The power generation company has so far invested BRL3.2bn ($637.54m) in the construction of the Futura I Solar Complex.

Construction of the PV solar energy generation complex is said to have involved 3,000 workers, with 80% of labour contracted in the region.

Eneva president Lino Cançado said: “The Futura Solar Complex I is a milestone in the history of Eneva that deepens the diversification of our portfolio and enables us to enter a new market with new products.

“Our company has the mission of leading the energy transition in a fair and inclusive way in Brazil, always with discipline in capital allocation, and the Solar Complex of Futura I is another example of this.”

Earlier this month, Eneva formalised an agreement with industrial gases company White Martins for the sale of energy from the Futura I Solar Complex.

As part of the collaboration, White Martins is expected to receive an average of 100.6MW of renewable energy from 2023 to 2035 to its facilities. White Martins has also become a partner in the solar power project.

According to Eneva, the commencement of commercial operations at the solar PV complex in Bahia will result in an 8% increase in the total centralised solar generation capacity in the country’s electricity matrix.

The Futura I Solar Complex is anticipated to be expanded with the construction of the Futura II and Futura III wind farms.

The expansion will add 2.3GW of installed capacity to the project, said Eneva.

Eneva acquired the Futura I Solar Complex from Focus Energia in March 2022.