Chile too plans to say goodbye to coal

The country currently gets between 35 and 40 percent of its power from coal, that’s why the decision to cut its dependence on coal-based energy production made headlines. Details are not yet known, but considering Chile’s reliance on coal, even the announcement is a big step towards a greener future.

Just because a country phases out coal and starts to look for other, more environmentally friendly solutions, it will not necessarily help the planet too much – very often it is not more than a buzzword and brings no actual benefit.

That was the case with France, which relies heavily on nuclear energy to meet its power needs. And it was similar when the UK made its big announcement, since the phasing out of coal and the diversification away from coal-based power production had started several years ago.

Chile, however, is another matter. The country currently generates between 35–40 percent of its electricity from coal. If it actually manages to wean itself off coal, it will contribute greatly to the health of the planet. However, at this stage the announcement only means ending the development of new coal plants, but the country's big energy players are also forming a working group to tackle the issue – so this is likely just the first step towards making Chile a greener country.

Chile has undergone a massive solar power boom in recent years and has large reserves of lithium as well, which is a key ingredient both in solar cells and in energy storage technologies, so this is likely not the last time we hear news about Chile and developments in renewable energy use.