Chile, Colombia, and Brazil have made the most strides so far in developing a hydrogen economy in Latin America, but they are hardly alone. The Second Latin America & Caribbean Hydrogen Economy Index (H2LAC Index 2022)—a tool first introduced last year to track progress in this burgeoning industry—showed a significant increase in activity across […]
The transition to clean energy is happening, but not without some setbacks along the way, according to high-level energy officials from four countries, who spoke at an event organized by the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA). The event, titled “Strategies to accelerate the energy transition in Latin America,” featured officials from […]
One of Mexico’s largest metropolitan areas has been grappling this summer with a severe water shortage. Now, faced with the likelihood that climate change will only bring more droughts in the future, local, state, and federal officials are trying to become better prepared. The crisis in Monterrey—the capital of the northeastern state of Nuevo […]
To keep a healthy bank balance, it’s important not only to have enough deposits coming in but to limit the amount of money going out. That’s a simple but useful analogy for thinking about water—especially at a time of tightening supply, according to water expert Brian Richter. As with money, the timing of the […]
A scorching summer across North America and Europe this year has provided a stark reminder that a warming climate can have severe consequences not only for the environment but for human health. As hot days become hotter and more frequent, the harmful effects on the human body are only expected to intensify—especially in highly urbanized […]
Prices are high for oil, natural gas, and coal—all the more reason to accelerate the transition to renewable energy. That is a growing priority for the Dominican Republic, which takes the helm of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA) for the next two years. The Dominican Republic still generates most of […]
If reducing carbon dioxide emissions is a marathon, the task of cutting methane emissions is a sprint, said Marcelo Mena, CEO of the recently established Global Methane Hub. Mitigating methane, he said, “will help us cool the world this decade.” Methane is what is known as a short-lived climate pollutant. On the minus side, […]
A cow grazing placidly in a field might as well be a gas-guzzling vehicle, given the quantity of methane it belches out during the digestive process. But a species of seaweed may hold the answer to that particular emissions problem—if scientists and entrepreneurs can figure out a way to produce enough of it. The […]
U.S. President Joe Biden said he wants to “intensify the relationship with the Caribbean,” including through the new U.S.-Caribbean Partnership to Address the Climate Crisis 2030. Vice President Kamala Harris officially launched the initiative—called PACC 2030 for short—during a meeting with leaders of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the Dominican Republic held at the […]
The Ninth Summit of the Americas, held recently in Los Angeles, brought to light plenty of disagreements and divisions—starting with the much-publicized controversy over the invitation list—but the need for climate action was one area where the region’s presidents and prime ministers found much common ground. “We have three global crises, and any one […]
One year after the entry into force of the Escazú Agreement—a regional treaty designed to protect the environment and those who defend it—Chilean President Gabriel Boric called for urgent joint action to confront the climate crisis. “Either we save ourselves together or we sink separately,” he said, “and I believe that the Escazú Agreement points […]
In Mexico, the legislature has blocked the latest attempt by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to reverse course on energy reforms enacted under the previous administration. But the outlook for the country’s electricity industry remains uncertain. Two developments in April, which took place just 10 days apart, marked the latest twists and turns in […]
Solar and wind are clean, renewable sources of energy, yet they are available only intermittently. But what if they could be turned into a stable supply of electricity? A French energy company is developing several projects in the region to do just that, with the help of green hydrogen. HDF Energy—the acronym stands for […]
In much of the world—including parts of the Americas—cooking indoors over an open fire is still a common practice, one that causes serious harm to the environment and to human health. Why is access to clean cooking such a seemingly intractable challenge? And why doesn’t it get more attention? Like access to electricity, access […]
Oil prices have hit their highest levels in years—a consequence of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine—and the repercussions are already being felt across the Americas. The region’s oil producers will benefit, but for many countries and consumers, it’s yet another reminder of the high cost of dependence on imported energy. If climate change wasn’t motivation […]
Suriname is the most densely forested country in the world, and it is all in on the transition to renewable energy. It is also on the cusp of a major oil boom. How will the country manage the transition to an oil-based economy and a green energy economy at the same time? Surinamese President […]
The energy transition can be a powerful engine of economic recovery that helps to drive a more just and inclusive society. That was one of the central messages of the Fifth Ministerial Meeting of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA), hosted this month by Panama. President Laurentino Cortizo welcomed energy ministers […]
On any given day, it may be easy to get discouraged about the pace of the energy transition, but look at the big picture and there’s a lot of reason for hope, John Kerry assured participants at the Fifth Ministerial Meeting of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA). “I’m excited about […]
“Just and Inclusive Energy Transitions” will be the focus of the Fifth Ministerial Meeting of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA), which takes place February 10 and 11 in the Panamanian capital. The event will bring together energy ministers and other high-level officials from Latin America and the Caribbean. In a […]
Like the other small island developing states in the English-speaking Caribbean, Trinidad and Tobago is highly vulnerable to climate change. But unlike its counterparts, it has an economy that is heavily dependent on hydrocarbons. That makes the energy transition especially tricky. Prime Minister Keith Rowley hinted at the difficulty of the task ahead in […]
In the Paraná River Basin of South America, particularly in southeastern Brazil, drought has put a strain on power systems that rely heavily on hydroelectric generation. The lights are still on, but reservoirs have reached perilously low levels, energy prices have gone up, and fossil fuel consumption is on the rise. In September, Brazilian […]
Young people are making their voices heard loud and clear on the urgency of tackling climate change. But they’re not just protesting in the streets. Many are channeling their energy toward climate-related projects or careers. Some are even leading climate negotiations. “Activism is not only in the streets,” said María Alejandra Téllez, co-founder of […]
As the international climate conference got underway last week in Glasgow, Scotland, Prime Minister Mia Mottley of Barbados spoke in powerful moral terms about the need to limit global warming. Her message was clear and straightforward: “Try harder.” Mottley urged countries to close critical gaps related to mitigation, adaptation, and finance in order to […]
Ocean conservation got a boost at COP26 when the presidents of Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, and Panama announced plans to expand their countries’ protected waters and create a new interconnected reserve to jointly protect a vast ecosystem teeming with marine life. In a declaration signed in Glasgow, Scotland, the four Latin American leaders committed […]
What does it mean for a country or a region to be competitive? It shouldn’t just mean that it’s the cheapest place to produce something, says Colombian President Iván Duque; after all, that seemingly low-cost production can come at great cost to the environment. Instead, Duque is calling on Latin America and the Caribbean to […]
When the COP26 global climate conference kicks off later this month in Glasgow, Scotland, the eyes of the world will focus on how countries and cities and companies plan to implement the energy transition and get to net zero. As important as it is to have these high-level targets and commitments, the conversation about energy […]
The average school or apartment building or skyscraper positively hums with energy, as occupants turn on air conditioners, fire up furnaces, or power an array of appliances, machines, and devices. All that activity emits a lot of carbon, of course, which is why improving energy efficiency is so important. But a less visible source of […]
Fewer than two months ahead of the global climate conference known as COP26, countries from across Latin America and the Caribbean vowed to step up their climate ambition even as they struggle to recover from a punishing pandemic. Economic recovery and climate action must go hand in hand, they stressed, and developing countries need creative […]
Panama is uniquely situated as a hub—for maritime transport, first and foremost, but also for air travel, banking, and other financial and logistical services. It seems only natural, then, for the country to become a hub of the energy transition, says National Energy Secretary Jorge Rivera. Both domestically and on the international front, Panama wants to bring people together not only to embrace clean energy but also to ensure that the transition to a new energy economy leaves no one behind. That will be a central message in February when the country hosts the Fifth Ministerial Meeting of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA), which will focus on “Just and Inclusive Energy Transitions.”
What does it mean for an energy transition to be just? A company called Navajo Power is reaching for that goal as it works to develop solar energy projects on tribal lands with a long history of energy injustice. It’s not simply about replacing fossil fuels with clean energy, a Navajo Power executive says, but about rethinking unfair arrangements that have allowed outside companies to reap most of the profits from energy while leaving local communities to suffer the detrimental impacts.
For millions of people across the Americas and around the world, a vacation often means a visit to a national park. These are special spaces that countries have set aside for preservation or conservation with the goal of protecting them for future generations. But what happens when climate change starts to fundamentally alter these protected areas? How will that change the experience for visitors, and is there anything that the stewards of these priceless resources can do about it?
Nearly four years ago, Hurricane Maria dealt a heavy blow to the Nature Island of the Caribbean, as Dominica calls itself. The storm slammed into the island with Category 5 ferocity, causing dozens of deaths, leveling structures, uprooting trees, and stripping the leaves off of those still standing. Fast-forward to today, and Dominica is as green as ever. From a distance, a forestry official says, the forests in Morne Trois Pitons National Park look much as they did pre-Maria. But step a little deeper into the trees and it’s clear that nature will need more time to fully recover.
For indigenous peoples throughout the Americas and across the globe, climate change is not some future abstract threat but an everyday reality that is already taking a heavy toll on their lands and livelihoods. It’s time for the rest of the world to pay attention, several indigenous leaders said recently, and to learn from the traditional knowledge of indigenous communities about how to take better care of the planet.
A growing number of countries in Latin America and the Caribbean are gearing up to produce clean hydrogen, driven by their abundant renewable energy resources, the need to decarbonize their economies, and the huge potential for hydrogen exports. Just how far along is the region’s nascent hydrogen sector? A new Hydrogen Economy Index found a lot of activity, with plenty of room to grow.
On Earth Day, leaders from around the world came together virtually at the White House to reaffirm the urgency of ramping up ambition on climate action. President Joe Biden, who unveiled new U.S. commitments under the Paris Agreement, urged his counterparts to see the climate crisis as not just an existential threat but also an unparalleled opportunity. “When people talk about climate,” he said, “I think jobs. Within our climate response lies an extraordinary engine of job creation and economic opportunity ready to be fired up.”
One thing that is crystal clear about global action on climate change is that it will require a staggering amount of money. Where is that going to come from—especially now, when economies around the world are struggling to recover from the pandemic? United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres believes economic recovery and climate action must go hand in hand.
The “push” and “pull” factors that lead people to migrate are many and multilayered, but one factor gaining increased attention is climate change. Natural disasters, such as the two powerful hurricanes that hit Central America last November, can be the final straw compelling people to pull up roots and seek a better future elsewhere.
Mexico’s Congress has passed a new Electricity Industry Law, reversing course on reforms that in recent years had opened up the energy sector to more competition and private investment. While it’s not clear whether the new law will survive legal challenge—it was stayed by a judge almost immediately—its passage has raised concerns that extend beyond Mexico’s electricity industry.
Texas produces far more energy than any other U.S. state, so the idea that millions of its residents could be shivering in the cold and dark for days on end may once have seemed unimaginable. But that’s what happened, of course, when a deep freeze in mid-February set off a cascading energy crisis that led […]
The two massive hurricanes that lashed Central America last November—Eta and Iota—upended the lives of millions of people in the region. As part of an ongoing series on the fallout, the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA) looks at Nicaragua’s northeastern Caribbean coast, where the eyes of both hurricanes made landfall just two […]
An energy technology company called BlocPower hopes to do for buildings on a large scale what Tesla is doing for automobiles. “You have to take fossil fuels out of the buildings, just like we have to take them out of cars,” said Donnel Baird, CEO of the Brooklyn, New York-based startup. “There’s just no way to deal with climate change otherwise.”
Last November, as an unusually active Atlantic hurricane season was coming to a close, two powerful storms brought death and devastation to several countries, most of them in Central America. Over the next few months, this newsletter will look at how some of the areas in the paths of Eta and Iota are faring. The first stop on this journey is a small Caribbean island called Providencia, part of Colombia’s Archipelago of San Andrés, Providencia and Santa Catalina. Winds from Hurricane Iota—the first Category 5 hurricane to hit Colombia—began to slam into the island during the night of November 15, leveling structures, ripping off roofs, and knocking down concrete electric poles. With the recovery process now underway, the Colombian government wants to build back better and put the island on track toward zero emissions.
Photo: Susan Welsh/AP In the weeks since he won the U.S. election, President-elect Joe Biden has made it clear that he intends not only to rejoin the Paris Agreement—“on day one of my presidency”—but also to make climate action a focus across both domestic and foreign policy. That change in U.S. priorities, several energy and […]
President-elect Joe Biden has assembled a prominent team—subject to Senate confirmation—to spearhead climate efforts at home and abroad. The administration plans to take an “all of government” approach to combating climate change, one that involves not just the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or the Department of Energy, for example, but also Agriculture and Treasury and […]
2010-04-21Nuestra visión es un futuro energético y climático sostenible para el Hemisferio