Latin American and Caribbean delegates attending a renewable energy finance forum in Miami have underscored the importance of clean energy, as investment in the region continues to grow.
According to one of the organizing groups, the Washington-based American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE), a non-profit membership organization, the Third Annual Renewable Energy Finance Forum – Latin America and Caribbean (REFF-LAC) is “dedicated to building a secure and prosperous” region, with clean, renewable energy.
“The region represents a real opportunity for investment and more success stories like the ones we heard this week from Barbados, Costa Rica, Mexico and Aruba,” said Carlos St. James, president of the Latin American & Caribbean Council on Renewable Energy (LAC-CORE).
“Renewable energy is an exciting growth industry globally,” he added.
St. James said more than 200 senior level executives, government officials and financiers from the region attend the two-day conference “to discuss success stories and the future of clean fuels in the region.”
LAC-CORE also awarded the first annual Clean Energy Award to Jose Maria Figueres, President of the Carbon War Room and former President of Costa Rica.
The award is given jointly by LAC-CORE and Spanish-language Clean Energy magazine to “a public figure who has done significant work towards the advancement of renewable energies in the region,” St. James said.
“President Figueres is an important leader in the work being done in the region to build a sustainable energy future for the world,” he said.
“This year’s Forum was a remarkable success – clean energy in the region is growing rapidly which is why it is important to coordinate policies and share best practices,” said Henry Hely Hutchison, managing director of Euromoney Energy Events, which produces high-profile events for energy professionals worldwide.
“The leaders at REFF-LAC are exactly the right people to develop the finance mechanisms and policies that will continue to drive the growth of clean energy,” he added.
Reports indicate that clean energy investment in non-Brazil Latin America last year reached US$4.6 billion, a 127 percent increase from 2011.
“Clean energy investment in many of these countries has now reached equity with Brazil,” said St. James.
“Growth in our industry is supported by investment and smart policy decisions throughout Latin America and the Caribbean,” said ACORE president Dennis V. McGinn. “The value chains we are creating are compelling,” he added. “I am optimistic about the future, based on the knowledge we have shared during the past two days.”