Green energy vs thermal
Green vs. thermal energy: false dichotomy and business for all
\"The economic and cultural effort to transform the electric park is huge and can not happen in a few years.The economy of entire regions of the country depends on the exploitation of fossil fuels that feed 98% of the electrical generation\"Juan Bosch, owner of Saesa
There is a calculation that is revealing and, at the same time, ardent for those who design energy policy. The energy that is consumed to make a photovoltaic panel is superior to all the solar electricity that this device can generate in its useful life. \"How much employment does a wind farm generate? What is the immediate economic benefit of importing windmills or other capital goods for clean electricity, if it does not help the local industry? it is a modernist whim of macrismo \".
The comment corresponds to an oil tanker who, like many of his colleagues, is also venturing into the new spectrum of private businesses that opened the official calls to increase the capacity of electricity generation in Argentina by the two feasible sources: thermal and renewable. The company man, frequent interlocutor of the minister Juan José Aranguren, speaks with technical foundations but also with the heart: he belongs to a business group that has just presented a project to build a gas plant. The initiative had the framework of the? Expressions of interest? expressed in the framework of Resolution 420 of the Ministry of Energy to test the entrepreneurial humor of developing initiatives in the field. According to the official vision, a resounding success.
\"Some 89 business groups presented a total of 196 ante-projects that include different generation variants that add 34,834 MW of new thermal power, a value greater than the total installed power generation throughout the country\", held Energy in a statement.
That spokesperson is on the side of those who believe that Argentina has fossil fuels for a while and it is absurd to exaggerate the proliferation of renewables (solar, wind, biomass) by neglecting gas or the more expensive substitutes such as diesel or fuel oil. Inputs that, exactly, the oil companies provide.
However, the division of the employer\'s rostrum is not so sharp. The producers of hydrocarbons and their derivatives also bet on green formats. Starting with the two most robust ones in the local market: YPF and PAE, just to give an example, they also develop wind farms. Adecco, Sadesa, Pampa Energía, SoEnergy, Enel or MSU Energy are among the several firms that have a leg on each bank. No one wants to be left out of the generating business, regardless of their technical worldview.
In its first year of management, the Government organized tenders to increase the supply of electricity in both ways, driven by two purposes. One is the urgency of increasing the installed power to avoid power cuts due to insufficient generation. Another of the official efforts is to comply with international commitments to reduce pollution, assumed in the Paris Convention. For Argentina to pollute less, it has, among other things, to moderate the use of fossil energy.
The green spirit is a strong feature of the Marist identity, proven not only in the creation of the Ministry of Environment, by Sergio Bergman.
Much of the new electric power that will be incorporated into the system will be renewable. According to the official plan in the next eight years will multiply by ten the power of this source, in a fast race. In 2015 it represented only 2% of the electricity matrix and ten years later it will reach 20%.
Another government step in a similar sense was to impose on large users the obligation to cover 8% of their energy needs with clean fuels, claimed in the current heading of all official documents: \"2017, year of The renewable energies\".
But the macrismo did not give up before the fashion and the official treat to seduce bidders was very attractive in all the contests to expand the electric supply.
Through Cammesa (Company Administrator of the Wholesale Electricity Market Corporation), the generators are guaranteed the purchase of their production for a certain number of years, at a rate in dollars and adjustable, which limits the risk. And in the case of renewables, they are given, in addition, the backing of tax benefits granted by a decree of necessity and urgency, but then validated by the Parliament with opposing endorsement.
Almost $ 60 average mega for renewable electricity (the base price is changing in the course of the contract) and with an adjustment of 1.7% per year in hard currency implies a reduction compared to what it cost so far. Although it remains onerous in relation to other sources, according to its detractors.
Beyond the conjunctural rivalry of those who are in one side or another of the business, the alternatives are not opposed but complementary and the point of debate is how the transition from a primarily fossil matrix to a less polluting one is made.
The specialists agree that it is technically unfeasible to suddenly transform the electric park. \"The economic and cultural effort is enormous and can not happen in a few years The economy of entire regions of Argentina depends on the exploitation of fossil fuels, which feed 98% of electricity generation
Today the operative regulation of the system is done with thermal energy or with large hydraulic power plants (also harmful to the environment). And while there are no efficient ways of storing the product of windmills or solar panels, turbines powered by gas or liquids will be essential to stabilize the system, avoiding blackouts that would otherwise be unavoidable.
With this idea outlined by Bosch, the environmentalist Roque Pedace also communicates, who in an interview with a specialized website added another argument that balances the balance between both options.
\"In any of the alternatives there are either imported equipment or fuel that is agreed in dollars, sometimes with multinational refiners, the key is to develop in Argentina the manufacture of these capital goods. \"
The new generation at a fixed price in hard currency - a value that today actually guarantees the State through Cammesa, but with contracts that will be transferred to private buyers in a while - aroused the appetite in the business platform as the smell of fresh bread baked. So much so that in the aforementioned expressions of interest, bold proposals were included to build coal plants. An alleged sacrilege for those who have a green heart.