In 2019, Chile’s economy was ranked 42nd in the world in gross domestic product (GDP). The country’s economy is dependent on the export of copper, produce, seafood, paper, wine, lumber, meat, and precious metals.
In 2013, Chile established a target for the utilities to generate 20% of its electricity from renewable sources. The country did not implement any financial incentives for new renewable energy projects.
In 2014, Chile enacted a carbon tax of US $5.00/CO2 Ton on emissions from power plants with capacity of more than 50 MW.
In 2016, Chile signed the Paris Climate Agreement, committing to an unconditional 30% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions per unit of GDP by 2030, compared to 2007 levels.
In 2019, national utilities used oil (41.7%), renewable energy (24.3%), coal (20.4%), and natural gas (13.7%) to generate electricity in Chile. Hydropower, biomass, solar, and wind are the dominant sources of renewable energy in Chile.
Recent renewable energy developments in Chile include:
- 210 MW Solar Project – In April 2021, Spanish renewable energy companies, Abengoa and Acciona commissioned the Cerro Dominador Solar Power Plant which combines concentrated solar power and photovoltaic technology. The plant which is located approximately 700 miles north of the nation’s capital, Santiago.
- 141 MW Solar Project – In August 2020, American solar company, First Solar commissioned the Luz del Norte solar project, which is located approximately 450 miles north of Santiago.
- 123 MW Solar Project – In March 2020, Spanish solar company, Solarpack commissioned the Granja solar project, which is located approximately 1,000 miles north of Santiago.
- 102 MW Wind Project – In April 2021, Norwegian renewable energy company, Statkraft announce plans to build a wind farm, which will be located approximately 75 miles south of Santiago. The project is scheduled to be commissioned by year-end 2022.
- Hydro Panel Project – In April 2021, Chilean renewable energy company, Lader Energy commissioned a solar project, which is capable of producing 10,000 liters of potable water per month from the humidity in the air. The project is located in the city of San Fernando, approximately 75 miles south of Santiago.
Chile imports virtually all fossil fuels (coal, natural gas, and oil), In 2017, fossil fuel were used to generate over 75% of the country’s electricity. The import of expensive fossil fuels negatively impacts the country’s economy.
Chile has significant renewable energy resources, including hydropower, solar, and wind. Chile is now making steady progress moving from expensive fossil fuels to inexpensive, reliable, green energy.
Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”
 Chile – The World Bank Group
 Gross Domestic Product 2019 – World Bank DataBank
 Carbon Brief – “2015: Tracking Country Climate Pledges”
 International Energy Association (EIA), Country Profile – Chile