Home World Events Economy Uruguay Shows How Clean Energy Can Be Good Business

Uruguay Shows How Clean Energy Can Be Good Business

Uruguay is not often in the news, but now this remarkable South American nation of 3.4 million people has turned a few heads, thanks to its initiatives in renewable energy.

Within the space of a decade, Uruguay has managed to massively slash its carbon footprint.

Ramón Méndez, Uruguay’s head of climate change policy, says that renewable energy currently supports 94.5 percent of Uruguay’s electricity needs, reports The Guardian.

The use of hydropower, wind turbines, biomass, and solar power provide the various energy sources that have made this possible.

See this video from Wochit News for a quick summary of Uruguay’s energy turnaround:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwxx7zcnVWQ

Not that long ago, Uruguay used to import energy to meet its requirements, but now those tables have turned.

“We used to be reliant on electricity imports from Argentina, but now we export to them. Last summer, we sold a third of our power generation to them,” Méndez said.

Moreover, Uruguay’s drive to rely on clean energy has been done without government subsidies or affecting consumers.

“What we’ve learned is that renewables is just a financial business,” Méndez says. “The construction and maintenance costs are low; so as long as you give investors a secure environment, it is very attractive.”

Méndez attributes the country’s success to “clear decision-making, a supportive regulatory environment, and a strong partnership between the public and private sector.”

Investment

Energy investment in the country is currently at almost $7 billion, equivalent to 15 percent of the country’s GDP. An estimated $2.6 billion investment in wind power technology is expected to triple Uruguay’s wind generation capabilities, reports Bloomberg.

The country aims to generate up to 38 percent of its power from wind by 2017. This would place Uruguay just behind Denmark, which is the global leader in utilizing wind power generation. The Danes got 43 percent of their energy needs from wind turbines last year.

The use of wind turbines is attractive due to their low operating costs, and because they are a back-up source of energy when drought periods affect hydroelectric dams.

See how wind turbines work in this video by Learn Engineering:

LIKE us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

James Burke
What keeps the world ticking? James is always looking for the answer and the latest news from around the globe. When he's not behind his computer, he's basking in the Thailand sun, or dreaming of the southern hemisphere, where he grew up in rural Australia.

Most Popular

Dominion Contractor Alleges Vote Tabulation Fraud in Detroit

Melissa Carone, a contractor who worked with Dominion Voting Systems at the Detroit TCF Center, recently testified at a Senate hearing in which she...

Video Footage in Georgia Shows Evidence of Alleged Fraud

On Thursday, Dec. 3, a Georgia senate subcommittee was presented with video footage showing what was alleged as the unsupervised counting of ballots after...

Hold on, 12 Young Hong Kong Protesters!

Carry on, young Hong Kong protesters! A few months ago, 12 young Hong Kong protesters attempted to flee Hong Kong to Taiwan without success. Some speculate...

Chinese Calligrapher Creates Artwork Reflecting the Pandemic Era

Liu Xitong is a renowned calligrapher from China who recently took part in a documentary by NTD Television titled "When the Plague Arrives." The...