The 531MW Mendubim solar project is Scatec’s second project in Brazil. Credit: Norsk Hydro ASA.
Construction of the Mendubim solar project commenced in July 2022. Credit: Scatec ASA.
The Mendubim solar PV plant commenced operation in March 2024.

The Mendubim solar project is a 531MW photovoltaic (PV) power plant constructed in the state of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil.

The project is developed by Scatec in partnership with Hydro Rein and Equinor, who each own a 30% interest. Alunorte, an alumina producer based in Brazil and a subsidiary of Hydro, holds the remaining 10%.

The three companies signed a memorandum of understanding for the development of a solar power plant in Rio Grande do Norte in December 2020 and were jointly responsible for the engineering, procurement and construction of the project. Equinor and Scatec additionally provide asset management as well as operation and maintenance services.

The project received a preliminary environmental permit and construction permit from the Environmental Authority of Rio Grande do Norte. The project is estimated to involve an investment of $430m.

Construction of the solar project commenced in July 2022. The Mendubim solar project commenced operations in March 2024 and has an annual power generation capacity of 1.2 terawatt hours.

The project generated 1,200 jobs during the construction phase. It helps in diversifying Brazil’s energy mix by adding renewable energy sources.


The Mendubim project is located in the municipality of Assu. The site, which can be reached from the BR-304 federal highway or the RN-233 state highway, is mostly used for livestock rearing.

Mendubim solar PV power project details

The project involved the design, construction and operation of the PV power plant along with a substation.

A 5.17km-long, 230kV transmission line was laid to evacuate the produced electricity and connect it to the Brazilian interconnected grid at the existing Acu III substation.


The Mendubim solar project is financed through non-recourse debt and equity from partners.

Multilateral investment institutions IDB Invest, Banco Santander, and BNP Paribas provided funding worth $243m for the project.

IDB Invest released an environmental and social review summary of the project in March 2022.

The loan agreement was signed in November 2022 and made the first withdrawal was made in March 2023.

Power purchase agreement

60% of the solar power produced from the project is supplied to Alunorte under a 20-year power purchase agreement signed with the developers in July 2022.

The remaining 40% of the electricity is sold in the Brazilian power market to meet the power requirements of 620,000 households in the country.

The asset is anticipated to produce real base project returns between 4% and 8%, which is Equinor’s targeted range for renewable energy.

Energy consumption and water management

The solar power project required 24.6 kilowatt hours (kWh) per month during the 23-month construction phase and 14kWh a month during the operating phase.

The greenhouse gas emissions from the project were 159,005t of carbon dioxide (CO₂) equivalent during the construction phase, mainly due to deforestation.

The emissions were reduced to 2,200t of CO₂ equivalent in the second year of construction.

The water requirement during the peak construction stage was 18.5m³ per day, which was stored in eight water tanks. The project requires 5.44m³ of water for panel cleaning during the operational phase.

A water management plan has been prepared to promote the efficient use of water resources.


White & Case, a law firm based in the US, advised IDB Invest on the financing provided for the project.