Investments of more than US$5,000 million would be unlocked according to renewable companies

Investments of more than US$5,000 million would be unlocked according to renewable companies

The main renewable energy generating companies have a pending investment capacity of at least US$5,000 million in projects in which they cannot advance due to the lack of availability of the transmission network. This is clear from different sources from the main operators in the local market, which indicate that The need for infrastructure in the system slows down the development of the energy transition in the country.

Argentina began the year with about 5,500 MW of installed renewable energy poweraccording to data from the Compañía Administradora del Mercado Mayorista Eléctrico SA, Cammesa, which does not include hydroelectric plants larger than 50 MW, which allowed it to cover 14% of the country's total electricity demand last year.

But the different business sources and the chambers that bring them together estimate an unsatisfied demand that, if realized under ideal conditions, would allow the current capacity to be doubled, which would translate into a need for investments exceeding US$5 billion.

One of the leading generation companies stated that “The projects in Argentina to be carried out can be estimated at a minimum of 5,000 MW in different technologies.that is, at least double the currently installed capacity.”

The same estimate was made by the Argentine Wind Chamber, CEA, and the Argentine Chamber of Renewable Energies, Cader, which have been warning for years about the transmission limitations as the main condition for the development of the industry.

The figure is derived from the estimated average of US$1 million per Mw installed, since it is estimated that the cost of the wind technology is US$1.3 million per MWand In the most economical case of photovoltaic solar, it is also US$0.7 million per MW.

These same companies operate in the local market both in contracts arising from the discontinued Plan Renovar as of the Renewable Energy Term Market, Matera segment with a specific regulation, within which the purchase and sale of electricity supply operations between private parties take place.

This mechanism, which in recent years has given dynamism to the sector, involves the Large Users of the Wholesale Electricity Market, MEM, with power demands equal to or greater than 300 kW, as an alternative to Cammesa's joint purchases.

As an example of the existing potential, Cammesa has just received 48 projects for around 3,700 MW that request dispatch priority -that is, authorization to increase the energy to be generated to the interconnected system- corresponding to the first quarter of the year, a little more than triple what the administrator offers for bidding in the coming weeks.

This is a portfolio of projects for about US$3.7 billion, which on this occasion includes the development of 19 wind farms and 29 solar parks distributed in a dozen provincesand how it has been happening In recent years the supply far exceeds the availability found in the system.

The urgent need for transportation also led companies to propose to the administering authority the possibility of providing transportation works associated with the energy generation project.

In the case of Genneia, the first renewable generator with more than 1Gw of installed capacity, was the one that presented the largest number of initiatives for almost 800 MW distributed in 12 projects in the different corridors in which the system is integrated.

Thus, Genneia presented in solar technology in the Retamito and Tocota III parks (San Juan)San Luis (San Luis), Anchoris III and San Rafel I and II, Los Molles (Mendoza), while in wind the parks Pomona III (Río Negro), Coiron I (Neuquén), Huacalito II (La Pampa), Vidal and Los Patrios (Buenos Aires).

In the case of YPF Luz -which leads the operation in the Mater- it was presented with a portfolio of 252Mw. In Olavarría, province of Buenos Aires, it presented two wind projects for 199 MW, in an area close to demand with a very good capacity factor as Los Teros has been demonstrating.

In Mendoza it presented 100 MW for the El Quemado project, which would be added to the 100MW already awarded, to give scale to a project that it already has in its pipeline. While in Córdoba, it bid for 62MW, adding to the 38 already awarded for Levalle I.

MSU Green Energy submitted three new priority dispatch requests for its solar energy generation projects. One of them, PS MSU San Martín, located in the province of Catamarca, is the largest presented in this round, with a generation capacity of 300 Mw.

At the same time, MSU also offered two more projects of 100 MW of power each. The first of them located in Andalgalá, in Catamarca, and the other in Tupungato, Mendoza. The three projects will require an investment of US$500 million, will generate employment for 200 people throughout their construction and will be able to come into operation at the end of 2025.

The companies assure that the sector, once transportation limitations have been overcome, has the potential for rapid development by having green financing widely available in the worldand find an important demand from the corporate sector, not only for environmental responsibility but also out of commercial necessity.

In the first case, At an international level there is a need to finance green projects at a low rate in line with the objectives and energy transition commitments that were imposed by countries, companies and the same private banks, investment and development funds that can fund projects in Argentina.

From the demand for renewables, beyond consumers, There is a widespread vision in companies about the need to make their activities sustainable in order to comply with green standards. that are beginning to be imposed as para-tariff barriers in different countries and trading blocs, which if not met can exclude them from external markets.