United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) Considers Brazil A World Leader in Clean Energy
By Dialogo June 05, 2009Toronto (Canada), 03 June (EFE). - A report on investments in clean energy, released today by the UNEP Program, classifies Brazil as “the largest world market in renewable energy” and highlights the steps taken by Latin America to support alternative sources. The “Global Trends in Sustainable Energy Investment” report affirms that, for the first time in history, investments in clean energy in 2008 were ahead of those made in sources of fossil fuels, and that they reached 155 billion dollars. The section dedicated to Latin America indicates that Brazil is the “the largest world market in renewable energy.” UNEP said that around 46 percent of the energy consumed by the country comes from renewable sources and 85 percent of the capacity to generate it comes from hydroelectric and bioethanol energy. Also, around 90 percent of their new cars are fueled with ethanol as well as with gasoline (which is mixed with at least 25 percent ethanol). At the end of 2008, ethanol comprised more than 52 percent of the fuel consumed by lightweight vehicles. Brazil is one of the world leaders in financing renewable energy. In 2008, the Brazilian National Development Bank (BNDES) financed more renewable energy projects than any other financial institution in the world. The report highlights that although Brazil represents more than 90 percent of the new investments in Latin America, Chile, Peru and Mexico, it is increasing its institutional support for clean energy. Chile recently approved a law concerning renewable energy that required electric companies which produce more than 200 megawatts to generate at least 10 percent from renewable sources. Since 2008, Peru has required that at least 5 percent of the electricity produced in the country over the next five years must come from renewable sources, for which it established a series of tax incentives. Mexico has as an objective that, by the year 2012, 8 percent of its energy consumption will come from renewable sources, although it is hoped that by the end of June that Mexican authorities will increase this figure to 16 percent.