Climate change opportunity to diversify energy: IDB

Updated: 2009-12-19 11:13
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SANTIAGO: Problematic as it is, climate change can serve as an opportunity to explore new energy resources and build more sustainable infrastructure, the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) said Friday.

The bank said in its latest report that though "climate change could affect many of the achieved advances for the promotion of social and economic development in Latin America and the Caribbean during the last decades; with the support of the IDB, the governments of the region are designing strategies of adaptation for different climate scenarios."

The report said that the region is using new technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and is doubling its efforts to achieve sustainable development.

But the report pointed out that adaptation to the new conditions is an essential priority for the region in its campaign for emission reduction and sustainable development.

The bank advised that the region focus on such sectors as agriculture, forests, water resources, transportation, tourism, urban development and housing, so as to better adapt to the new conditions arising from the climate change.

The regional development bank said in the report that Latin America and the Caribbean region together account for 12 percent of the world's total greenhouse gas emission.

But Latin America generates disproportionately more carbon dioxide due to its massive and uncontrolled deforestation and inefficient use of fertilizers.

Since 2000, the regional bank has financed local renewable energy projects worth 2.1 billion US dollars in an effort to boost the development of green energy such as hydropower, windmills and geothermal energy, and to increase energy efficiency by improving electrical transmission at the same time.