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Argentina has announced the winners of the second round of the RenovAr program awarded to bids for generating energy from renewable sources across the country.
During a press conference held at the finance ministry, 66 contracts were awarded to wind, solar, biomass, biogas, landfill biogas and small hydroelectric projects.
Wind power came in at both the lowest minimum and average prices with US$37.3/MWh and US$41.2/MWh respectively, followed by solar (40.4 and 43.5), small hydro projects (89.0 and 98.9), biomass (92.0 and 96.7), landfill biogas (128 and 129.2) and biogas (150.0 and 156.8).
Most wind projects were awarded to Buneos Aires province, followed by Chubut, Cordoba and Catamarca also receiving many projects.
Energy and mining minister José Aranguren said: "We want to diversify the energy matrix. Renewable energy also helps us achieve security in that field. The other objective of this ministry is to mitigate the effects our activity has on climate change."
Regarding round 2.0 of RenovAr, renewable energies undersecretary Sebastián Kind said "we have received offers for 228 projects for 9.39GW in 21 provinces, compared to the initial target of 1.2GW."
MORE: Click here to access the original document with details of the awarded projects
Aranguren said that "We are looking at prices well below those from the previous year. We went from a price of US$55 or US$57/MWh in wind and solar to today's values between US$40 and US$42/MWh. This is a clear demonstration of an open and transparent process, and with the advances in technology and better confidence from investors in the country it will lead to a much more profitable situation in the next 20 years."
The minister also noted that prices have aligned with other countries in the region like Chile and Mexico which have also seen record-low prices for renewable energy bids.
Finally, the minister announced the launch of an extra phase to the current round of the RenovAr program: "We are going to offer the market an additional opportunity, especially those that were not awarded in this first part. It is phase 2 of this process: we are going to offer 50% of the quota (600MW) and we are going to invite bids that equal the average price of what was awarded [this round]".
Interested parties can reapply in the next 10 days. The minister emphasized the authorities' interest in more biogas and biomass projects.
The RenovAr 2 contracts are expected to be signed "between January and March," Aranguran added.