Transparency, cooperation and innovation were recurring concepts during the seminar Climate Action Teams (CAT): A mechanism to contribute to accelerating decarbonization and increasing climate ambition in Chile. Progress and challenges.
Santiago de Chile, June 20, 2023. The event, organized by the Climate Action Teams (CAT-Chile) initiative in collaboration with The Corporate Leaders Group for Climate Change (CLG Chile), included the presentation of the study “GHG mitigation beyond the NDC in Chile: an assessment of alternatives”, developed by the UC Center for Global Change (CCG UC) and presented by team members Diego Gonzalez (CCG UC) and Alvaro Lorca (UC Energy Center). The document is available at this link: click here
The seminar also included two conversation modules in which topics related to how to accelerate decarbonization in Chile and the role of international cooperation, through Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, in the face of this global challenge were addressed.
The meeting took place at the Faculty of Economics and Business of the University of Chile and was attended by representatives of the private, public and academic sectors, as well as civil society organizations.
Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, on which CAT is based, has not yet materialized any bilateral trade and host countries still lack national frameworks to implement its mechanisms. Each country must design its own technical and policy tools to carry out ITMOS exchanges. Therefore, the cooperation and future steps of CAT are of great importance. For example, the multi-stakeholder dialogue process that will take place between June and September 2023, which aims to understand the key elements of a common vision to meet the challenge of increasing the country’s climate ambition, considering how and to what extent international cooperation instruments based on the use of markets can contribute to this, and specifically, the possible contribution of CAT in this matter.
Regarding the study and its main conclusions, it was recognized that Chile’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) is ambitious, but it is not possible to guarantee compliance with the established commitments. Therefore, the importance of taking additional actions that can generate a significant mitigation surplus at a reasonable cost was highlighted. In addition, it was mentioned that early phase-out of coal-based energy is not the most cost-effective mitigation action in the energy sector, according to the document. It was also emphasized that much of the additional mitigation potential up to 2030 depends on the power generation sector.
During the discussion sessions, María Teresa Ruiz-Tagle, executive director of CLG Chile, moderated the first module together with Jenny Mager, head of the Climate Change Division of the Chile’s Ministry of Environment; Hans Eben, vice-president of ICARE; and Álvaro Lorca, associate professor of the Electrical Engineering Department of the Catholic University (UC).
Mager acknowledged that meeting Chile’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) by 2030 will be the most difficult challenge and, therefore, it is necessary to focus on meeting current commitments. In addition, he highlighted the importance of CAT not only in the transfer of emission reductions under Article 6, but also in technology exchange and sharing experiences on the implementation of climate actions.
Eben said it is crucial to distinguish between large and small companies and to understand their carbon footprint. He also highlighted the importance of accelerating the conversation with the cross-sectoral sector.
Ruiz-Tagle agreed that large companies play an important role and should lead the transition not only in their own industries, but also in their value chains. He also mentioned that many large companies are already measuring their carbon footprint, but they have yet to do so and to consider all the necessary scopes.
Lorca, for his part, emphasized the importance of addressing the carbon tax in the electricity sector, but also pointed out the need to focus on issues such as transmission, storage and electrification. According to him, it is critical to move away from the direct use of oil, wood and gas.
Regarding the possibility of CAT contributing to accelerate decarbonization, Eben suggested that it would be interesting to know the incentives and benefits of the mechanism. He proposed that, through taxation, carbon removal and innovation should be incentivized and small and medium-sized producers should be prepared to meet the demands of the European market. From this perspective, CAT could facilitate capacity building and technology transfer, always looking for simple mechanisms.
The second conversation module was led by Francisco Pinto, focal point of CAT Chile, and included the participation of Carolina Leitao, mayor of Peñalolén and vice-president of Sustainable Urban Development and Climate Change of Mercociudades; Francisca Sandoval, national coordinator of the Alliance for Climate Action (ACA) Chile; Jaime Tramon, senior advisor of the Finance and International Affairs Coordination of the Ministry of Finance; and Nicolás Gordon, vice-president of Sustainability of CMPC.
For Leitao, international cooperation is absolutely necessary and makes it possible to address current inequalities, generating flows not only of financing, but also of knowledge, technical assistance and collaborative work. She highlighted the importance of considering the territory in this process.
Tramon mentioned that, although Chile is a country highly vulnerable to climate change, belonging to the OECD has led it to be perceived internationally as a country that requires less financing than others. However, he noted that Chile has managed to access international resources through multilateral cooperation, with good experiences in international coalitions of the Ministry of Finance.
From ACA, Francisca Sandoval highlighted collaboration as a fundamental element to overcome the various challenges, as the road has not been easy.
As a member company of CLG Chile, Gordon acknowledged that many companies are still unaware of issues such as the Paris Agreement. In the case of CMPC, when they began to address sustainability and climate action, they set goals and sought to address these issues internally and externally. He highlighted the key role of the value chain and collaboration in this process.
If you would like to access the full video of the CAT Seminar, you can do so through this link: Click Here