Spotlight: Argentina's new renewables tender

Bnamericas Published: Monday, February 06, 2023
Spotlight: Argentina's new renewables tender

Argentina has launched a new renewables and storage tender that will continue with the legacy of the long-abandoned RenovAr auction scheme started in 2016.

The call encompasses only new projects and includes 20 of Argentina's 23 provinces, divided into six main regions.

The region assigned the highest capacity is NEA, which includes the northeastern provinces of Formosa, Misiones, Chaco and Corrientes, for a total of 240MW assigned. It is followed by NOA with 140MW, which includes the northwestern provinces of Catamarca, La Rioja, Santiago del Estero, Salta, Jujuy and Tucumán.

While the city and province of Buenos Aires were assigned 100MW of capacity, two provinces to the north of the capital, Santa Fe and Entre Ríos, were assigned 40MW, while those to the west, including Córdoba, San Luis, San Juan and Mendoza, were assigned 30MW. Lastly, the southern provinces of La Pampa, Río Negro and Neuquén, were assigned 20MW.

The far south provinces of Chubut, Santa Cruz and Tierra del Fuego were not included in the tender.

Projects can belong to any of two categories: 500MW in total were assigned for small solar, wind, biomass and storage projects between 3MW and 20MW. Those that include a storage component must have a battery capacity of at least 25% of the generator's capacity.

The second category, which was assigned 120MW in total, includes 30MW of biogas capacity, 20MW of landfill gas, 30MW of small hydro and 40MW of biomass, at between 0.5MW and 20MW per project.

Since the call has energy diversification as a guiding principle, no more than seven projects for each technology will be awarded, according to the tender documents.

Projects in the first category must be built within three years of being selected, while second-category developers have four years to meet their commitment. Once built, they will access 15-year supply contracts with wholesale market administrator Cammesa, with a premium paid for projects that can inject power during high-demand hours.

The call also establishes a maximum award price ranging between US$75/MWh for the cheapest solar projects and up to US$190/MWh for biogas projects.

A consultation period will be open until February 24 and offers will be received until March 15, with commercial offers being opened on May 10 and the projects announced on May 24. Supply contracts will be signed between May 29 and September 20.

The full document can be seen here, in Spanish.

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