Neuquén province eyeing renewable energy

Bnamericas Published: Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Argentina's Neuquén province is looking to develop renewable energy to make up for stagnant oil and natural gas production, governor Jorge Sapag said after signing a new contract with oil firm YPF. The province already has signed a 10mn-peso (US$3.2mn) contract with Argentine firm Invap to study the development of three wind turbine prototypes, the provincial press office said in a statement. Another 20mn-30mn pesos will be contributed from other sources. Neuquén's provincial power company EPEN, meanwhile, is preparing to map the province's wind potential. "We have a lot of good areas," Sapag said. "Some of the better zones include Cordillera del Viento, Zapala, Cutral Co and Picún Leufú." Sapag is set to travel this week to Germany, where he will meet with officials involved in both wind and run-of-the-river generation projects. "I'm going to meet with several companies that develop small scale hydro projects and we're looking to see what kind of investments they could make in Neuquén," Sapag added. The province also is looking to develop geothermal generation projects and several companies are already interested, according to the governor. Provincial officials have already held talks with experts from Iceland about the province's potential, according to the statement.

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