by Tom Kenning, PV Tech
The World Bank has approved a 20-year US$480 million guarantee for Argentina’s flagship renewable energy plan, known as the RenovAr programme.
Under RenovAr, Argentina has already seen two highly successful renewable energy auctions in which the government was shocked by the high levels of interest in solar PV – enough to make it expand the capacity available for solar from 300MW to 400MW in the first round.
The World Bank will now support the Fund for the Development of Renewable Energies (FODER), which was created to facilitate the financing of projects under the RenovAr Programme. Related technologies include wind, solar, biomass, biogas and small hydroelectric.
Of the 59 projects awarded between Rounds 1 and 1.5 of the RenovAr Programme, 27 requested the World Bank guarantee, including 10 solar PV (306MW), 12 wind projects (721MW), four small hydroelectric projects (4MW) and one biogas (1MW).
Juan José Aranguren, Argentina’s minister of energy and mining, said: “The support of the World Bank has allowed our country to advance renewable energies in a matter of months what was not done for a decade – contributing to our goal of guaranteeing energy security and reducing the impact on climate change.”
Jesko Hentschel, director of the World Bank for Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay, said: “This project encourages private investment in renewable energies that help meet the growing demand for energy in the country with a clean source that enhances sustainable development.”
Argentina’s long-term target is to achieve 20% renewables in the energy mix by 31 December 2025.
The board of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) also approved a loan of US$130 million for projects awarded in Argentina’s RenovAr renewable energy programme last year. Meanwhile, President Mauricio Macri began this year by declaring 2017 as a “Year of Renewable Energy”.
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