Climate, Energy and Environment News from Latin America: 11.8 - 11.12.2010


A second set of comments from public authorities was issued concerning the environmental impact assessment of the Cuervo river hydroelectric dam project.  The company Energía Austral will have to respond to the 228 comments. (El Divisadero, 11/10/10)  The National Geological and Mining Service (Sernageomin) also issued a report this week on the Cuervo River Project pointing to the region’s high degree of exposure to geological activity and recommended looking into alternative locations for the project. (La Tercera, 11/8/10)

HidroAysén appointed Julio Montero Montégu as the project’s new technical manager. (Diario Financiero, 11/8/10)  Environmental groups that oppose the construction of the HidroAysén dam project have received $6.5 million between 2006-2010 for their opposition campaigns.  (El Mercurio, 11/8/10)

Energy minister Raineri signed an agreement with the mayor of Easter Island and the mayor of the Valparaíso region to develop unconventional renewable energy projects for the Island. (Ministerio de Energía, 11/12/10)  Also this week, Raineri took notes from New Zealand’s geothermal energy experience at an international geothermal seminar. (Ministerio de Energía, 11/11/10)

Research will be conducted on the energy potential of tidal waves in Chacao channel .  The Chilean project won three years worth of funding from the Development Fund for Science and Technology (Fondef). (El Mercurio, 11/8/10) 

A study conducted by the University of Chile forecasted that Chile’s Greenhouse Gases will quadruple by 2030, specifically in the transport and energy sectors. (Estrategia, 11/8/10)

A forestry company, Bosques Arauco, was held accountable for the environmental damage it created to 33 pines in the Biobío región seven years ago.  The court ordered the company to plant 2.36 hectares of native trees. (El Mercurio, 11/9/10)

Costa Rica:

Costa Rica banned open pit mining.  This reform of the mining code will not affect existing mining projects such as the controversial Crucitas mine. (El Financero CR, 11/10/10)


This week President Felipe Calderón inaugurated the Bicentennial Park in what used to be the Azcapotzalco refinery. (JOT, 11/8/10) More than 1 million cubic meters of contaminated soil was remediated (La Jornada, 11/8/10) to build the 55 acre park. (Planeta Azul, 11/9/10)

UNESCO ranked Mexico number one in terms of nature reserves, followed by Brazil and Argentina.  They hold 40 of the 140 protected natural areas around the world. (Teorema Ambiental, 11/11/10)  Mexico named Oaxaca as its most biologically diverse state, representing almost 40% of the national flora. (Planeta Azul, 11/12/10)

In a letter to the news publication, El Universal, the Governor of the State of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto, stressed management of water resources and payments for environmental services as ways to combat the environmental crisis. (El Universal, 11/8/10)

In March of next year, the developer Geo will award more than a thousand low income workers sustainable housing. (La Crónica de Hoy, 11/8/10)

Note: The linked articles and excerpts in this post are provided for informational purposes only and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of the Natural Resources Defense Council.