The European Commission and Argentina have signed a non-binding agreement aimed at ensuring a stable supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to Europe in exchange for cooperation on green energy initiatives and addressing gas leakage issues.
The agreement reflects the strong economic relations between the European Union (EU) and Argentina, with the EU being a significant investor in the country and Argentina being the EU’s third-largest trading partner in Latin America.
The agreement focuses on four key aspects: hydrogen and its derivatives, renewables, energy efficiency, and LNG. With Russia’s gas flows into Europe at a record low, the agreement aims to enable a stable delivery of LNG from Argentina to the EU. Argentina, a major player in the gas industry due to its rich shale gas reserves, is working to boost its LNG industry to begin exporting at scale by 2027. The agreement emphasizes alignment with long-term decarbonization objectives and the goals of the Paris Agreement.
As part of the agreement, Argentina commits to tackling gas leakage issues in its gas wells. Venting and flaring practices, which release methane into the atmosphere, will be addressed using new technologies to reduce methane leakages to the maximum technically feasible level. Methane, a potent greenhouse gas, has a climate impact 28 times greater than CO2 on a 100-year basis. The agreement also highlights the potential for integrating recovered methane, such as from landfills, into the supply chain to reduce emissions.
The agreement recognizes Argentina’s potential as a renewable energy powerhouse, leveraging its abundant wind resources, particularly in the Patagonian region. While specific details are limited, the agreement aims to facilitate investments to increase energy trade between the EU and Argentina. The extent of funding through initiatives such as the European Hydrogen Bank or H2Global remains uncertain.
European investments in Argentina have focused on various sectors, including electricity grid upgrades, waste and water management, and mineral resource exploitation. However, it is unclear whether similar initiatives will support the development of Argentina’s LNG infrastructure.
The non-binding agreement between the EU and Argentina represents a significant step towards ensuring a stable supply of LNG to Europe while promoting green energy cooperation. The agreement emphasizes the need for decarbonization and addressing gas leakage issues. As both parties work together, they can harness Argentina’s renewable energy potential and create a sustainable energy future while leveraging European investments to support energy trade and infrastructure development.