Brazil seeks to join International Renewable Energy Agency
07 February 2018 | Mitigation
Last month, Brazil announced its intention to begin the process of becoming a full Member of the International Renewable Energy Agency, and this month the Agency has welcomed Brazil’s intentions, saying the decision “reflects the country’s strong commitment to multilateralism and sustainable energy.”
Brazil’s Minister of Mines and Energy, Fernando Coelho Filho, announced last month the intention of his Government to begin Brazil’s accession to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). The announcement was made alongside President of the Energy Research Company (EPE), Luiz Barroso, at IRENA’s 8th General Assembly held in Abu Dhabi in January.
“Brazil is one of the best examples of the substantial representation of renewable energies in the matrix, both electric and energy, and I am convinced that we can contribute a lot with the Agency and its member countries,” said Minister Filho last month. “As a member, we will be able to participate more actively in the debate on relevant issues on the international energy agenda, as well as benefit from the tools and initiatives developed by IRENA.”
The move comes only a few months after Brazil joined the International Energy Agency as an Association Country — “countries that work “hand-in-hand with the IEA on critical issues” that include energy security, data and statistics, and energy policy solutions.” Brazil joined only six other Association Countries — China, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Singapore, and Thailand. Brazil’s move to join IRENA brings the Agency’s number of countries seeking Membership up to 27, in addition to 154 full-fledged Members.
“With today’s announcement of IEA Association, we are taking another important step to place Brazil at the centre of global debate on key energy policy issues including renewable energy, energy efficiency, rational use of fossil fuels, energy security and sustainable development,” said Filho back in November.
According to the US International Trade Administration, Brazil sources 76% of its electricity from renewable sources — accomplished primarily through hydropower, which according to IRENA’s most recent figures, sits at an impressive 97.6 GW. The country also boasts 13 GW of bioenergy and another over 11 GW of wind power — the world’s ninth-largest wind generator, and with a target of 24 GW by 2024.
Unsurprisingly, Brazil’s move to seek membership with IRENA has been met with support from the Agency and its Director.
“Brazil’s decision to seek IRENA’s membership reflects the country’s strong commitment to multilateralism and sustainable energy,” said Adnan Z. Amin, IRENA Director-General. “A pioneer in bioenergy and one of the leaders in wind and hydro in Latin America, Brazil has a vast, diverse and growing renewable energy portfolio which positions it to play a key role in the global energy transformation underway.”
“Brazil is very happy to start the process of joining IRENA,” said Fernando Coelho Filho this month, expanding on his comments from January. “The country is one of the best examples of the substantial role renewables play in both the energy and electricity matrixes and of policy innovation for their development. As a participant in IRENA, Brazil will be able to actively take part in the debate of the most relevant topics in the global energy agenda, as well as to benefit from the tools and knowledge base developed by the Agency. I am convinced Brazil will significantly contribute to, and benefit from, IRENA and its member countries.”