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Government and renewable energy in Latin America

Hydropower generates about 70% of world’s total renewable energy and over 80% of renewable energy in Latin America. This is a massive market share; therefore government policies and legislations are playing vital role in the development of renewable energy sources across Central and South America.

What is renewable energy?

Renewable energy is a self-explanatory term describing energy sources that are not going to run out. The most common renewable energy categories include:

  • Wind power
  • Hydropower:
  1. hydroelectric dams / reservoirs
  2. small hydro
  3. Run-of-the-river hydroelectricity plants
  • Solar energy
  • Geothermal energy
  • Bio energy
  • Energy storage

How is Government impacting renewable energy in Latin America?

Renewable energy is highly encouraged by governments in LATAM region. At the moment countries like Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Panama, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Mexico and Colombia are all passing legislations to promote development of renewable energy sources.

When it comes to small hydro and government – policies vary across Latin America. There are laws facilitating the development of small hydro (for example Colombia), however you can find other countries that are giving the priority to other sources of renewable energy (for example Peru or Panama). Some worth mentioning renewable energy laws, legislations and government policies are summarised below.

  • Brazil has recently committed to expand non-hydro renewable energy sources to 20 per cent of electricity supply by 2030
  • Chile’s government on the other hand began promoting sustainable hydroelectricity projects in 2014 and are doing that up to this day
  • ‘Law 1715’ in Colombia is regulating the integration of non-conventional renewable energy sources, facilitating the development in small hydro

Why small hydro is important?

Small hydro is a hydroelectric plant with a capacity of 20MW or less. It plays an important role in renewable energy market – small hydro is a valuable niche of the renewable energy industry, providing local power in underdeveloped countries and sources of new capacity in established markets.

Small Hydro Latin America

This year’s annual Small Hydro Latin America event will be looking at challenges and risk for renewable energy, especially small hydro in LATAM region. Regulations and government policies with regards to renewable energy will be discussed in depth; in addition Commission of Energy Regulation of Mexico will be featured on the agenda. Come along to learn about small hydro and renewable energy from a line-up of very senior speakers and network with industry peers.

Countdown to Small Hydro Latin America 2018