Paraguay to map solar, wind potential

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Luis Manuel Aguirre, president of Paraguay's aeronautics authority Dinac, and Itaipu technology park PTI executive director María Teresa Peralta signed (pictured left) a cooperation agreement to advance a project to map the country's solar and wind power potential.

Under the deal, new stations will be installed in Dinac's meteorological and hydrographic system to allow PTI to carry out georeferencing and measurement work and data transmission, PTI said in a statement.

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In December, operations kicked off of a hybrid wind-solar farm in Boquerón department.

This week, PTI, with Itaipu Binacional and Fundación Bariloche, also presented a long term energy plan for Paraguay.

Energy plan presentation (CREDIT: Itaipú Binacional)

Researchers said that final energy consumption by 2038 is forecast to grow at a rate of 2.3% in a reference scenario and that industry offtake is projected to reach 43% from 26%.

Growing demand will reduce electricity exports, according to the experts, who said the country's power generation reserve margin could reach 100% by 2038 from the current 230%.

Binational hydroelectric dams Itaipu and Yacyretá supply the bulk of Paraguay's electricity.

In a related report, Paraguay's public works minister Ramón Jiménez Gaona announced approval of a US$40mn special credit line to promote forestry plantations.

Minister Ramón Jiménez, third from left, at forestry financing press conference (CREDIT: Public works ministry)

Biomass supplies 46% of the country's energy needs, a ministry statement quoted Jiménez as saying. "The idea is to promote the reforestation of 40,000ha a year to cover a total of 160,000ha."

The minister also highlighted the need to invest close to US$5bn to shore up state power company Ande's transmission infrastructure in the next 10-12 years.

Ande has a call underway to build the Yacyretá-Ayolas-Villa Hayes transmission line with offers due next month.