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Chile is likely to debate in the coming years lifting its current target—having 70 percent clean energy by 2050—to having 100 percent of electricity generation from renewable sources, as lower costs and expected improvements in storage could speed up its transitioning from fossil fuels, the executive secretary of the national energy commission CNE told Chile’s Diario Financiero in an interview published on Wednesday.
Chile could achieve its target to have 20 percent of renewables of electricity generation five years ahead of the scheduled deadline 2025, according to CNE’s Andres Romero, who was speaking on the sidelines of a roadshow in Berlin.
Also in the German capital, Rodrigo Castillo, executive director of a Chilean federation of electricity companies, told Diario Financiero that it is very expensive for the companies to import oil and gas, and it makes sense to assess the alternatives.
In 2015, Chile adopted an energy plan, Energia 2050, which set out the goal to have 70 percent of total electricity generation coming from renewable energy sources by 2050.
Chile’s current renewable share is estimated at around 15 percent, according to Climatescope2016.
The country’s import dependence on oil and gas for electricity generation caused electricity spot market prices to reach an average of US$112.3/MWh on the country’s main electricity grid in 2013, much higher than the region and a setback for the economy, according to a report by the U.S. Department of Commerce.
The Atacama Desert in Northern Chile is considered to be the world’s best solar resource, the report noted. Chile currently has many projects under development across all subsectors, and many of those projects are developed with the expectation to sell electricity on the spot market, something very rare among global renewable energy projects, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.