Energy in Latin America and the Caribbean: access, renewability and efficiency

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Energy in Latin America and the Caribbean: access, renewability and efficiency


Energy is central to addressing almost every major challenge and opportunity in the region, whether it be reducing poverty, producing and cooking food, boosting employment, improving security, using digital services or raising incomes. However, the current energy model with its heavy use of fossil fuels jeopardizes environmental equilibrium, as it is a major contributor to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 seeks to ensure access to affordable, secure, sustainable and modern energy. To this end it sets three targets, the first concerning access to energy, the second energy renewability and the third energy efficiency. In what follows, these three aspects are analysed from a statistical point of view, while the contribution of energy to GHG emissions will be dealt with separately in view of its great relevance to what ECLAC has described as one of the biggest market failures in history.


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1. Despite major improvements in recent decades, certain social groups and certain areas still lack access to electricity .-- 2. Despite a sharp increase in the supply of non-combustible renewable primary energy, the share of fossil fuels in the energy mix is still very high .-- 3. The energy intensity of GDP is decreasing in the region, which means that efficiency is improving .-- 4. The energy sector is estimated to account for 55% of greenhouse gas emissions in Latin America and the Caribbean .-- 5. Conclusions.