Enel presented the webinar titled “Latin America undergoing a full energy transition: the challenges of circular cities and regional interconnection

Published on Thursday, 17 December 2020

Today, Enel presented the  “Latin America undergoing a full energy transition: the challenges of circular cities and regional interconnection”   webinar, with Mauricio Bezzeccheri, Enel CEO for Latin America, as host.  Participating were Carlos de Miguel, Manager for the ECLAC Sustainability Development Policy Unit; Luca Meini, Enel Circular Economy Manager; Giuseppe Montesano, Under Secretary for the Enel Foundation; Jesús Tejeda Leading Specialist for Energy at the IDB; and José Enrique Martínez , General Manager for the Empresa Propietaria de la Red S.A.

“The traditional vision of energy is changing and its main actor is innovation.  We chose an open cooperation model, interconnected with all of the countries in the region in order to maintain a quality service and to increase resiliency”, stated Bezzeccheri during the opening speech.

During the encounter, the emphasis was placed upon sustainability, the importance of the circular economy and the basic axes for Enel: to measure and improve projects, the circular design of assets and materials, to improve circularity and to focus upon the customer by means of our new business models as well as fostering the development of smart cities in order to create a sustainable world.

De Miguel, from ECLAC, spoke about the importance of sustainable growth for the region, which according to the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean should be 4% per year, during 10 years, in combination with active redistributive policies to achieve zero poverty. “In order to achieve these rates without compromising the external and environmental balance, it is essential to advance in a transformative recovery supported by structural change, technical progress and decarbonization. In this context, special attention should be paid to renewable energies, electric mobility and public-private articulations promoting industrial development in the region on the basis of caring for the environment ”, he said.

For his part, Luca Meini, said that Enel is "collaborating with institutions, companies and associations to develop a vision of the circular cities of the future, with the aim of achieving economic competitiveness, environmental sustainability and social inclusion". For this, the company focuses on renewable energies, being the first operator worldwide; the extension of product life, through better design, maintenance and repair; increased life cycles and focus on services. The commitment of the is to be 100% carbon-free by 2050. "We work with all our suppliers towards a circular economy, we design it for all our lines of values," he explained.

In turn, Giuseppe Montesano presented the work done out of the Enel Foundation, a research and knowhow center, which focuses on the “green recovery” of the economy, promoting actions, financing and collaboration so that growth is associated with projects in the energy sector that place the environment and sustainable development at the core through regional interconnection and collaboration.

Jesús Tejeda, from the Interamerican Development Bank spoke about the importance of regional energy integration, underpinned by the development of four large electric power interconnection systems in Latin America and the Caribbean: The Central American Interconnection System (SIEPAC); the Andean Electric Interconnection System (SINEA); the Southern Energy Integration System (SIESUR); and the Caribbean Interconnection System (ARCONORTE). He specified the structuring process of these initiatives that implies a continuous dialogue with the countries in technical, economic, social, environmental, legal and political aspects. The relation of cooperation between public and private actors was a central axis of the webinar. José Enrique Martínez, from the Empresa Propietaria de la Red, Owner of the Network, detailed the efforts carried out throughout many years developing SIEPAC, the results achieved to date and the lessons learned. He pointed out the importance of financing, through the participation of the Multilateral Development Bank, as has been the case of the IDB in the region.

Closing the seminar, led by the Communications Manager of Enel Argentina, Alejandra Martínez, Bezzeccheri, who before taking charge of Enel for the entire region was country manager in Argentina, said: “No single actor on his own can carry out these projects. Joint works and interconnections are key to the energy transition. The fundamental aspects are environmental sustainability, caring for the natural wealth, biodiversity; and social sustainability.”