Environmentalism vs. Energy Development

The change in the energy matrix towards renewable sources is at risk "because of social unrest and systemic opposition to the development that Guatemala so desperately needs."

Thursday, August 4, 2016

From the executive summary of the report "Impact of ungovernability and systemic opposition to renewable electricity generators and their socio economic effects locally and nationally both now and in the future 2015-2030":

There is no doubt of the importance of renewable energy in the global panorama of the future. The weight and responsibility of tackling climate change falls on this type of energy with good reason: it is efficient, cheap, but above all, environmentally friendly. In this global environment which is favorable to the sector, Guatemala has made great strides since 2012, when a roadmap was written into the Generation and Transmission Plan of the National Electric Energy Commission (CNEE) to diversify the energy matrix, reduce energy prices, improve efficiency and minimize the emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs).

These advances are at risk due to social unrest and systemic opposition to the developmentalist movement that the country so desperately needs. Each renewable generation plant which does not come into operation strongly impacts the economy: for every 100 MW of power that is not online, 1% of GDP is lost in benefits for operators over a period of 15 years; also, in the same period carbon emissions are increased by up to 1.4 million metric tons. 68,000 jobs are lost and the state loses up to Q780 million in taxes.  

See complete study by the CABI.

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From June 5 to 9, companies from the energy industry will be gathering together in San Pedro Sula to take part in business conferences and discuss issues that are relevant to the sector.

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Guatemala: Perspectives for the Energy Sector

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According to the CNEE the current available power will be able to supply the market for more than 15 years, even in a scenario with increasing demand, therefore it is not recommending new tenders in the short term.

The 'Conclusions' section of the document "Indicative Plans for Generation and Transmission 2016" by the National Electric Energy Commission (CNEE by its initials in Spanish) :

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SMEs in developing countries could generate jobs and significant growth by taking advantage of the market opportunities offered by clean technologies.

From a report by the World Bank:

SMEs in developing countries could generate significant growth and jobs if they take advantage of market opportunities that offer clean technologies, which reach up to $1.6 trillion.