Small hydro group to lead Chile’s carbon reduction program

Chile’s small and medium-sized hydropower association announced it will coordinate implementation of Chile’s program to qualify energy projects to sell carbon emission reduction credits under the United Nations’ Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) program.

The Asociacion de Pequenas y Medianas Centrales Hidroelectricas (APEMEC) said it will lead efforts for validation and registration of projects that can offset emissions of carbon dioxide thought to contribute to global warming.

The initiative was developed by Chile’s economic development agency, Corporacion de Fomento de la Produccion (CORFO). (HNN 10/3/07) The agency developed a document of design of program activities as the first key step for processing proposed CDM projects.

�The objectives of APEMEC are the identification of potential project participants, determining the volume of carbon credits, ensuring proper implementation of the program, and consensual and transparent transfer of economic benefits generated by this program to the project owners,� APEMEC said.

CORFO’s deputy manager of strategic programs, Javier Garcia, said CORFO’s objective is to help Chilean companies achieve the highest profit in the markets in which they participate, in this case, the carbon emissions reduction market.

APEMEC President Petro Matthei said the group’s first step will be to survey all projects that qualify to determine the volume of carbon emissions reductions to be created. Then it is to begin efforts to convey the benefits of the projects.

APEMEC said its data and that of other sources such as the Universidad Federico Santa Maria indicate the generation potential of Chile’s small hydro projects exceeds 1,700 MW. Just in the basins of Lago Ranco and Lago Puyehue, APEMEC said it identified about 20 small hydro projects that are beginning to develop for an estimated investment of US$550 million. It said similar situations exist in watersheds of the Longavi, Maule, Bio Bio, Laja, Tolten, San Pedro, and Pilmaiquen rivers, among others.

To ensure that all projects are determined to be eligible, APEMEC said it is consulting with regional entities holding water rights applications for generation.

For information on participating in the program, contact Asociacion de Pequenas y Medianas Centrales Hidroelectricas (APEMEC), (56) 2-5859500; E-mail: ctrucco@aaktei.com; Internet: www.apemec.cl.

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