The location for the
Belo Monte hydro-power
project on the
Xingu River
 
Sao Paulo, Brazil — ESI-AFRICA.COM — 03 February 2011 – The Brazilian environmental agency Ibama has approved the start of initial construction work for the 11 200MW Belo Monte hydro-power project in the Amazon, according to latest wire service reports.

In August last year, Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva signed the concession contract for the construction of the hydro-power project. Norte Energia “’ the consortium that won the contract to build Belo Montem “’ is made up of state-run utility holding company Eletrobras; Brazil’s second-largest pension fund, Petros; and several local construction companies, Reuters reported.

The Norte Energia consortium won the bidding process for the Amazon dam and hydro project only after construction bidding had faced several delays due to initial opposition to the project.

The Belo Monte hydro-power project is expected to begin producing electricity in 2015. Some estimates suggest the project will cost around US$11.2 billion. It will be built on the Xingu River in the state of Para.