Chile

Women – the Pillar of the Social Struggle in Chile’s Patagonia Region

In few places in Chile are women the pillars of community, grassroots rural and environmental movements as they are in the southern wilderness region of Patagonia. It is a social role that history forced them to assume in this remote part of the country.

Threat of Hydropower Dams Still Looms in Chile’s Patagonia

After its victory in a nearly decade-long struggle against HidroAysén, a project that would have built five large hydroelectric dams on wilderness rivers, Chile’s Patagonia region is gearing up for a new battle: blocking a quiet attempt to build a dam on the Cuervo River.

A Life Reserve for Sustainable Development in Chile’s Patagonia

The people of Patagonia in southern Chile are working to make the Aysén region a “life reserve”. Neighbouring Argentina, across the border, is a historic ally in this remote wilderness area which is struggling to achieve sustainable development and boost growth by making use of its natural assets.

Chile’s Patagonia Seeks Small-Scale Energy Autonomy

The southern region of Aysén in Chile’s Patagonian wilderness has the highest energy costs in the entire country. And the regional capital, Coyhaique, is the most polluted city in the nation, even though it has huge potential for hydroelectricity and wind power.

Chile Taps Solar Thermal Energy with Latin America’s First Plant

With the first solar thermal power plant in Latin America, Chile hopes to begin to alleviate its energy crisis, which threatens to further drive up the high cost of electricity and to hinder the growth of investment, especially in the mining industry.

Floods Displace Lives and Dreams in Paraguay

The worst floods in the history of Paraguay have forced 300,000 people to flee their homes. Asunción, the most affected area, and other urban and rural areas were flooded by the rain-swollen Paraguay and Paraná rivers, foreshadowing what might happen when the El Niño phenomenon kicks in.

Chile Vows to Dispel Lingering Shadow of Dictatorship

Chile has made a commitment to the international community to improve human rights in the country and erase the lingering shadow of the dictatorship on civil liberties.

Natural Gas – Both Crisis and Solution in Chile

In April 2004, Argentina began to steadily cut natural gas exports to neighbouring Chile, triggering a major energy crisis and revealing structural problems in this vital sector.

Chile’s Patagonia Celebrates Decision Against Wilderness Dams

The Chilean government rejected Tuesday the controversial HidroAysén project for the construction of five hydroelectric dams on rivers in the south of the country. The decision came after years of struggle by environmental groups and local communities, who warned the world of the destruction the dams would wreak on the Patagonian wilderness.

Schools Reflect Segregation in Chile’s Educational System

The decentralisation of Chile’s public schools, which were handed over to the municipalities to run in 1981, gave rise to a de facto segregation that has cast a shadow over several generations of Chileans.

Seasonal Agricultural Workers Left Out of Chilean Boom

Tens of thousands of women employed as seasonal workers in rural areas of Chile suffer high levels of poverty and poor working conditions, even though their labour generates huge profits for agricultural exporters.

Conflict with Local Communities Hits Mining and Oil Companies Where It Hurts

Conflicts with local communities over mining, oil and gas development are costing companies billions of dollars a year. One corporation alone reported a six billion dollar cost over a two-year period according to the first-ever peer-reviewed study on the cost of conflicts in the extractive sector.

When China Sneezes, Latin America Gets the Flu

China’s massive urbanisation has been built, literally, by metal, supplied mostly by Latin American countries (LAC). Yet now China’s slowing economic growth and falling commodity prices threaten Latin American commodity booms.

Piping the Waters of Southern Chile to the Thirsty North

Three private sector initiatives are aimed at carrying water from the rivers in southern Chile to the arid north of the country by ship or through underwater or underground pipelines. The objective is to slake the thirst of the mining industry of this country, the world’s largest producer of copper.

Chilean Tax Reform Shifts Toward Income Redistribution

Chilean President Michelle Bachelet’s proposed tax reform is seen as the cornerstone of her ambitious social programme and a sign of a new shift in fiscal policy towards redistribution of income.

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