Project delays in Brazilian electricity auctions
The database used in this study was compiled gathering information published by the Brazilian Power Trade Chamber (CCEE), the Brazilian Electricity Regulatory Agency (ANEEL) and the Independent System Operator (ONS). Basic information on project characteristics, commercial operation date, and main PPA features were obtained from the combination of two CCEE's monthly updated publications: the “Consolidated Auction Results” (CCEE, 2021a) and the “Market Information Bulletin - Individual Project Data” (CCEE, 2021b). Additionally, we accessed auction notices and PPA drafts to verify, for each case, whether the auctions rules included preliminary project elimination by connection point and whether the risk of transmission delays w allocated to generation project developers. The resulting database contains, for each project, information regarding energy source, geographic location, installed capacity; date of effective start of commercial operation; auction type and date; contract modality (quantity or availability) ; start and end date of the contracted supply period; energy traded per year; PPA price. The universe of available information comprises 84 auction rounds, held between 2005 and 2021, in which a total amount of about 9,935 TWh was contracted, from 1,472 generation projects. For this study, Existing Energy Auctions and Adjustment Auctions were excluded from the base, as they are intended for contracting energy generated by plants already built and in operation. Electricity generation projects were selected from the most relevant sources in the expansion of the Brazilian power sector: wind power plants, hydroelectric power plants, small hydropower plants (<30 MW), photovoltaic solar plants (solar PV), and thermal power plants fueled with natural gas, biomass and coal. Regarding wind power and solar photovoltaic plants, due to tax incentives and regulatory issues , it is usual that larger wind power complexes are virtually segmented into smaller adjacent farms. For this study, based on the information extracted from ONS (2022), each of such groups was assembled into a single project, as they usually share the same facilities, developers, licensing and construction process. For projects that sold energy in more than one auction, we considered, in our statistical analyses, only the first auction in which the project was awarded a contract. Finally, five power plants that started commercial operation less than six months after the auction date were also filtered out, since these projects were already in advanced construction stages when the auctions took place. At the end, 429 projects remained in the base, with a total installed capacity of 60.5 GW, which sold 4,973 TWh in 35 auction rounds. The reference date is December-2021.