Energy Transition vs. Energy Security: Compatible Processes?

The thematic day incorporated the voices and experiences of countries in the region regarding the current processes of transformation of their energy matrices and the challenges posed by the current energy security situation.

On 15 November, the Euroclima programme held the thematic day Energy Transition versus Energy Security - Compatible Processes? which brought together diverse voices from Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe to address the key issues surrounding the current global energy crisis and the tension this poses for the advancement of climate goals in the sustainable transformation of the sector.

Thus, the day began with the event Just Energy Transition in Latin America: Ensuring Energy Security and Equity for the Territory, which invited representatives of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, Asociación Ambiente y Sociedad, NGO CEUS Chile, MOCCIC, DAR Peru, the Bolivian Platform against Climate Change and the Climate Initiative of Mexico to address the issues of environmental reparation and citizen participation. Among the reflections, the need to recognise environmental remediation for climate justice was raised, as well as the importance that local governments play in exercising the channel with civil society. 

In addition, the Pan-Amazonian Cities Forum was highlighted as a platform for political dialogue and cooperation between local governments in the region which has as its basis conducting exchanges on sustainable urban development and the preservation of the Amazon rainforest.

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The day continued with the event National Hydrogen Strategies for a transition towards energy security in Latin America and the Caribbean, which included the intervention of the Minister of Energy of Chile, Diego Pardow, who highlighted the work with the private sector, and the development of a portfolio of projects to advance the installation of this technology in his country.

The session continued with a panel composed of representatives of international cooperation, the private sector and the public sector in the region, where it was highlighted that although green hydrogen is presented as a great opportunity for Latin America and the Caribbean, it is necessary to create the necessary enabling conditions and position this technology as a clean energy alternative. It was also indicated that it is necessary to work on this transition towards green hydrogen not only aiming at the development of infrastructure, but also in terms of capacity building of professionals in the sector, for their integration into the transition.

This was followed by the session Advancing clean energy and its prosumers: solar generation distributed in Latin America and the Caribbean, a space that highlighted distributed generation as an essential factor for decarbonisation, especially highlighting that in 2021 Latin America and the Caribbean will incorporate more than 470,000 distributed solar generation systems, which represents 4.6 GW of new installed capacity, generating more than 50,000 jobs.

This was followed by a debate session moderated by EUROCLIMA+ where the conclusions drawn from the above-mentioned events were shared and contributions were made by an important panel of specialists including:  Elke Hüttner, Director of the Climate Change, Environment and Infrastructure Division at GIZ; Dr. Jorge Rivera, Secretary of Energy of Panama; Lidia Wojtal, leader of the collaboration and development of the International Network of Think Tanks on Energy Transition of Agora Energiewende; Marta Torres, Climate and Energy Expert and Cecilia Garibotti, Undersecretary of Planning of the Secretariat of Energy in Argentina.

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The debate revolved around the promotion of decision-making based on existing roadmaps or their redesign in line with a decarbonisation ambition that allows us to access greater impacts and in shorter timescales. In addition, important points were made about the possible risk of climate objectives losing prominence in the face of the current energy crisis and the importance of avoiding technological dependence, highlighting the integration of regional markets as a mechanism to protect against energy supply emergencies.

Finally, the debate emphasised the application of a renewed and effective strategy addressing the diversification of the supply and the supply mix of long-term sources as well as the development of the infrastructures associated with their deployment.

The High Level event in charge of the closing of the day was focused on the energy transition towards sustainable growth and carbon neutrality. It was attended by Mr. Wilbert Rozas, Minister of Environment of Peru, Felice Zaccheo, Head of Unit for Mexico, Central America, 

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Caribbean and Regional Operations, International Associations (DG INTPA), UNEP representatives, members of the Peruvian Renewable Energy Association, UNEP representatives and representatives of the Peruvian Ministry of Energy and Mines. 

Claudia Espinoza, representative of the Peruvian Ministry of Energy and Mines, shared a study on an assessment of the convenience of continuing to invest in natural gas in the face of scenarios of increasing introduction of renewable energies in the region. The results show very favourable numbers for renewable energies in terms of economic development, employment generation and, of course, emissions reduction. In addition, the production of net green jobs along with the energy transition was presented, highlighting how this represents an overall opportunity for direct growth while helping us to reduce emissions. 

Finally, the Peruvian ambassador to Egypt closed the event by stating that it is necessary to reduce the elements of geopolitical vulnerability and the need to accelerate the diversified energy matrix.

Outcome of the debate: Energy transition versus energy security   Carolina Leitao - Mayor of I.M. Peñalolén, Chile
Fermin Koop - Earth Journalism Network, Journalist   Wilbert Rozas Beltrán - Minister of Environment of Peru


EUROCLIMA+ is a programme funded by the European Union and co-financed by the German federal government through the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), as well as by the governments of France and Spain through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation.  

The Programme's mission is to reduce the impact of climate change and its effects in 18 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, promoting mitigation, adaptation, resilience and climate investment. It is implemented according to the "Spirit of Team Europe" under the synergistic work of seven agencies: the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), the AFD Group: the French Development Agency (AFD)/ Expertise France (EF), the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the International and Ibero-America Foundation for Administration and Public Policy (FIIAPP), the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) GmbH, and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP).

Euroclima is the European Union's flagship programme on environmental sustainability and climate change with Latin America. It aims to reduce the impact of climate change and its effects in Latin America by promoting climate change mitigation and adaptation through resilience and investment. 
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