Power Shortage Hurts Chile’s $100 Billion Copper Push

(BLOOMBERG) The biggest-ever pipeline of copper projects is under threat as Chile, the world’s top producer, struggles to contain rising opposition to new power plants.

At least 5,000 megawatts of capacity, including a $5 billion coal-fired plant proposed by Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista, are facing delays or have been shelved as companies including BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP) and Anglo American Plc spend as much as $100 billion on copper and metals projects in Chile.

The country, struck by a power blackout as recently as this week, needs to boost capacity by 47 percent within 8 years to keep pace with consumption. Protesters from fishermen to university students oppose the plants, prompting miners to consider their own projects to help meet China’s copper demand.

Read full article by Matt Craze in BLOOMBERG BUSINESSWEEK