Around 5.2 GW of solar to compete in third round of Argentina’s RenovAr program

The Argentinean government yesterday finalized the opening of the technical bids for the third bidding round, the so-called Ronda 2, of the RenovAr program for large-scale solar and renewable energy power projects.

According to information provided to pv magazine by Marcelo Álvarez, president of the Argentinean Chamber of Renewable Energy (CADER), PV was the source with the largest capacity in submitted offers, with around 5.2 GW of projects.

Wind power was the second largest bidder with 3.8 GW, followed by biomass with 188 MW, biogas with 59 MW, biogas from landfills with 15.2 MW and small hydropower capacity 32 MW. In the bidding round, the Argentinean government is seeking to award 550 MW wind, 450 MW of solar, 100 MW biomass, 35 MW biogas, 15 MW biogas from landfills and 50 MW small hydropower capacity.

The price cap for PV projects was set at of $57.04/MWh. Back in Ronda 1, the median price for PV projects awarded was around $59.75/MWh, while the average price for the PV projects within the Ronda 2 stood at $54.94/MWh. “We expect a further drop in price in Ronda 2,” said Alvarez.

The RenovAr program was initiated last year with the Round 1 and 1.5 tenders, in which more than 2.5 GW were awarded in renewable energy projects, around 900 MW of which was allocated for PV. According to Alvarez, around 400 MW of the solar capacity allocated in the first two rounds of the program is currently under construction. Most of this capacity is represented by the 300 MW Cauchari solar project, whose beginning of work was announced in early October.

By the end of the year, Argentina aims to source 8% of electricity needs from renewable sources, and its 2025 target stands at 20%. According to the last available data, 59% of the electricity generated in Argentina comes from fossil fuels.

A more detailed analysis of Argentina’s PV market will appear in the November issue of pv magazine International. Click here to subscribe.