Chile Chile

Chile keeps its ranking of 9th in this year’s CCPI and is among the high-performing countries.

Chile receives a high rating in the GHG Emissions, Renewable Energy, and Climate Policy categories. In Energy Use, however, it earns a very low rating, especially owing to a very low rating in the Energy Use per Capita indicator when compared with a well-below-2°C benchmark.

Chile has implemented various policies aimed at carbon neutrality and decarbonisation of the energy mix. The CCPI experts criticise there only being energy efficiency standards in the country, and not laws. Overall, the experts stress that Chile should develop a long-term climate strategy, more seriously address the threats towards increasing water scarcity, as well as diminishing biodiversity (threatened continually via devastating fires and no appropriate public handling of them), to achieve the above policies and tackle the goal of climate neutrality by 2050. The experts, from the policy evaluation, note carbon tax reform is needed to go along with these polices. At the present, the fuel and emission tax is very low. There are several projects for non-conventional renewable energies (NCREs) that serve as a global example. Main energy sources in the NCRE category are hydro, wind, and solar, including large-scale concentrated solar power plants, as well as biomass and geothermal. These projects are showing good results and Chile has met its target of a 20% increase by 2025 for the share of these energy sources far ahead of schedule.

Chile is a frontrunner in international climate policy in Latin America (LATAM region). The country initiated the Climate Ambition Alliance in partnership with the United Kingdom. This has set the goal of reaching the global net zero target by 2050. More than 1,000 companies and 120 countries are part of this alliance launched during COP25, which Chile hosted. Chile is also a regional leader in using renewable hydrogen as part of industrial decarbonisation strategies. The government launched its National Green Hydrogen Strategy in 2020 and is supporting several pilot projects across the country. The experts note Chile has little weight in climate negotiations, yet they believe Chile can inspire and support other countries in the LATAM region in their climate action efforts.

The following national experts agreed to be mentioned as contributors for this year’s CCPI: Nuria Hartmann (Hinicio Chile); Sam Leiva (Fundación Heinrich Böll Stiftung Cono Sur); Teresita Alcántara (Municipios ante el Cambio Climatico)

Technical note: how to read the target comparison graph

The graph above shows the development of a country over the past years compared with its Paris compatible pathway and 2030 target. For all three quantitative categories of the CCPI, this visualisation gives an overview of where a country is right now, where it would need to be to fulfil the Paris Agreement promises and where it aims to be in 2030.

For GHG emissions per capita, the data includes LULUCF, as used for the emissions per capita indicator. This leads to the vast changes in emissions of some countries with high forest coverage. The calculation of individual country target pathways is based on the common but differentiated convergence approach (CDC). It is based on the principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities” laid forth in the Framework Convention on Climate Change. All Annex I countries therefore have a decreasing pathway from 1990 onwards, starting at that year’s emissions. 60 years later, in 2050, these countries are expected to reach net zero emissions. All other countries, which did not reach the level of global average emissions in 1990, are allowed to increase emissions until the average is reached. But by latest 2015 these countries, too, have decreasing pathways and 60 years to reach net zero. These pathways start from the global average.

The Renewable Energy data is given in per cent of Total Primary Energy Supply (TPES) and includes hydro energy, consistent with the respective CCPI indicator. As global distribution of Renewables (especially solar and wind) only started in the 2000s, the pathways in this category start in 2010. All countries have an equal goal: 100% Renewables in 2050, each starting from its 2010 value.

For Energy Use the Primary Energy Supply per capita is shown. All pathways for this category start at country’s 1990 values and meet at global average of 80 gigajoules per capita in TPES. For 2°C and 1.5°C scenarios, a decrease in emissions by reducing the (growth in) energy use is as crucial as deploying renewable (or other low-carbon) technologies. The IPCC carried out a scenario comparison using a large number of integrated assessment models. From the scenarios available, we observe that the total amount of global energy use in 2050 has to be roughly the same level or a bit higher than it is today, with a margin of uncertainty. At the same time population will grow slightly between today and 2050. We therefore pragmatically chose the well-below-2° compatible benchmark to be “same energy use per capita in 2050 as the current global average”, which is 80 gigajoules per capita in TPES.