Argentina evaluates potential for geothermal project

CORDOBA, ARGENTINA - Argentine power company Energia Provincial Sociedad del Estado, which operates in the San Juan province, has recently signed an agreement with Geotermia Andina SA to conduct geothermal exploration in the Valle del Cura, Department of Iglesia, San Juan province.

Site surveys and exploration activities will be carried out within the next 11 months, and according to the studies' results, a 5-megawatt (MW) geothermal station could be installed in the Campo Termal de Despoblados, which is the most interesting area for geothermal exploitation, according to Jose Luis Gioja, governor of San Juan.

The San Juan province aims to use all resources available to increase power-generation capacity. The province has several ongoing initiatives that take advantage of renewable resources such as the Caracoles, Punta Negra, and El Horcajo hydropower plants, as well as a 5-MW solar project that is currently in the bidding process and has an estimated startup date of late 2010.

Research in Argentina indicates that the country has 25 areas with favorable characteristics for the development of geothermal projects.


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