Brazilian electricity regulatory agency Aneel has awarded contracts to develop 30 new solar parks in the country.

The combined solar power generation capacity of all the parks would be 1GW. The move is part of the government’s plans to increase its renewable energy generation capacity.

Citing Aneel, Reuters reported that the energy supply contracts for 20-year periods cover solar parks in five states and are expected to cost about $1.2bn.

The latest auction brings the number of solar parks being constructed in Brazil to 61. All the projects are expected to start operations by late 2017.

Aneel approved a resolution that regulates the steps to issue permits for new solar power projects.

Under the new regulation, the procedures for the registration of solar power plants will be listed.

The facilities should be connected to the national grid and developers are required to start testing and commercial operation after securing approval from Aneel.

The preliminary data from the 2009 National Energy Balance, carried out by the Energy Research Corporation, revealed that renewable energy accounted for over 85.4% of the domestically generated electricity used in Brazil.

The country’s total installed photovoltaic power capacity to be between 12 and 15 Mwp, which is less than 0.01% of the total energy.