Until 2007, Uruguay was strapped for energy resources that forced it to rely on importing energy from South American neighbours. That has changed. Today, 98 percent of the country’s power is delivered reliably and affordably from renewable sources. Compare that to the worldwide average that is typically reported in the low- to mid-20 percent range and you can see that this small country might just be on to something. Does little Uruguay have a blueprint for renewable energy that others could follow?
Located between Argentina and Brazil, its two larger neighbours and trading partners, Uruguay is geographically the second-smallest nation in South America, with a population of about 3.45 million people, of whom roughly 1.8 million live in the metropolitan area of its capital, Montevideo. Since the signing of the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, Uruguay has surprised its South American neighbours with its growing list of environmental successes, including conserving native forests, protecting biodiverse areas, and showing remarkable progress on a promise to be carbon neutral by 2030.
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