ECLAC Hosts First Latin American Conference on Marine Energy

27 September 2011: The UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF), and the Governments of Canada and the UK co-organized the First Latin American Regional Conference on Marine Energy, which was attended by representatives from governments and the private sector, as well as marine energy specialists.

The Conference took place at ECLAC headquarters in Santiago, Chile, from 26-27 September 2011. It opened with an examination of the international context, including a global overview and discussion of activities in Canada, Portugal and the UK. Participants were then provided a regional overview of ECLAC's work in renewable energy.  The morning of the second day featured presentations on marine energy research and development in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador and Venezuela. The afternoon looked at technologies, measures that favor the development of marine energy, and possible regional coordination on the issue.

During the Conference, CAF Vice-President for Infrastructure Antonio Juan Sosa expressed the CAF's interest in supporting tidal energy, wave energy and fluvial hydrodynamic power development in Latin America. Hugo Altomonte, ECLAC, closed the conference by stressing the urgent need to assess the potential impacts and benefits of marine energy in the region. He underlined that marine energy could reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and improve economic productivity, social inclusion, well-being and governance. [ECLAC Press Release]