NotiEn - A Newsletter on Energy Policy Issues in Latin America
December 23, 2010Vol 2, Issue 3
Climate Change
Latin American Efforts to Combat
Climate Change


The decisions of the world community on global climate change will have a large bearing on energy policies in the Americas and other parts of the world. The effort to limit greenhouse-gas emissions implies that national energy policies will put less emphasis on producing hydrocarbons and greater attention on alternative nonpolluting energy sources. Some Latin American countries have already begun implementing policies that de-emphasize the use of fossil fuels and promote alternative energies, such as wind power, hydroelectricity, biofuels, and nuclear power. Leaders of the larger metropolitan governments are also moving in that direction.


This issue of NotiEn examines two major conferences, both held in Mexico at the end of 2010, which addressed global climate change.


In one article, we examine how mayors from around the world viewed the global-warming issue at the World Mayors Summit on Climate (WMSC) in Mexico City on Dec. 6.  The piece offers insights into the mayors' conference from the point of view of Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard, who hosted the event.


The second article looks at the results of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Cancún, also known as COP16, and opinions on whether the gathering was a success or a failure.  There were differences within Latin America, with host country Mexico trumpeting the success of the conference because of the countries' ability to reach a level of consensus not present at the last meeting in Copenhagen.  In contrast, Bolivia warned that the lack of a binding commitment on the part of industrialized nations to reduce emissions could doom the planet.


Regardless of the opinions on the results of COP16, there is consensus that something must be done to address the negative effects that the warming of the climate is having on poor nations around the world.  One study indicated that 40 million people in Latin America and the Caribbean were affected by climate change between 2000 and 2009.

Carlos Navarro - Editor

In This Issue...
A Note From the Editor
Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard Beats Climate-Change Drum
Cancún Summit on Global Climate Change a Success or Failure, Depending on Whom You Ask
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Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard Beats Climate-Change Drum - By David Agren
Mexico City

Mexico City's Eje Central thoroughfare slices the Distrito Federal into eastern and western halves and funnels traffic from the southern suburbs into the Centro Histórico.  It also is known as the zero-emissions corridor, with the original plans calling for the removal of cargo trucks and polluting public-transport vehicles known as microbuses, along with the advent of bicycle lanes and trolleybuses.


The corridor is but one example of local actions undertaken by sub-national jurisdictions to combat climate change, which has been an issue being addressed during the past two decades by national governments. These local actions are increasingly being carried out in places such as Mexico City during an era when the threat of climate change is pressing but national governments have been unable to achieve significant international agreements. Read more...

Cancún Summit on Global Climate Change a Success or Failure, Depending on Whom You Ask
By Carlos Navarro

Depending on whom you ask, the UN conference on climate change in Cancún, Mexico, on Nov. 29-Dec. 11, 2010, was a total failure or a step in the right direction to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, generally thought to be responsible for the warming of the Earth's atmosphere. The Cancún gathering was also known as COP16--an abbreviation for the sixteenth edition of the Conference of the Parties of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). 


Those who viewed the results of COP16 with the "glass-is-half-full" premise included the host of the gathering, Mexican President Felipe Calderón, who said the agreements reached at the conference "put Mexico and the whole world on the right path to confront the threat of global warming and climate change". Read more...

Energy Policy, Regulation and Dialogue in Latin America


NotiEn is an original newsletter with breaking news that analyzes and digests relevant and contemporary information in energy, alternative energy and energy policies in Latin America. A complimentary service provided by the University of New Mexico as part of LA-ENERGAIA Project funded by the US TICFIA Program