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Electricity in Chile in 2022

Global Ranking: #37
52.9% #58 Low-carbon electricity
487.23 watts #81 Generation / person
328.22 gCO2eq/kWh #66 Carbon Intensity
Net exporter Electricity imports

Currently in Chile, more than half of its electricity consumption, precisely 52.88%, comes from low-carbon energy sources. This includes significant contributions from hydropower at 24.35% and solar energy at 17.38%, and to a lesser extent, wind and geothermal power at 10.6% and 0.55% respectively. However, almost half of the electricity, 47.12% to be exact, is still generated from fossil fuels, with coal and gas being the main contributors at 24.17% and 21.36% respectively, and a small portion from oil at 1.59%. Remarkably, Chile is not just consuming this electricity but is a net exporter, providing surplus power to other countries.


To increase their low-carbon electricity generation, Chile can further expand their existing wind and solar energy facilities. Chile's geographic location, rich in desert sun and coastal winds, is ideal for these technologies. Looking at other countries' success in similar geographic conditions, Denmark, for instance, has been exemplary in utilizing wind energy, generating a whopping 52% of their electricity from it. Meanwhile, countries like France and Ukraine have managed to harness nuclear power substantially, contributing 61% and 58% of their electricity respectively. Though nuclear energy is currently not part of Chile's energy mix, these figures should inspire the country to consider the potential that nuclear technology may offer in terms of clean and sustainable energy production.


Looking into the history of low-carbon electricity in Chile, there have been fluctuations, particularly in hydroelectric power generation over several decades. The 1990s saw steady increases in hydroelectric power generation, with a significant jump of 4.2 Terawatt-hours (TWh) in 1991, followed by increases of 3.6, 2.1, and then drops of -3.0 and -2.4 TWh in 1998 and 1999 respectively. The early 2000s also had an upswing, notably 4.9 TWh in 2000. However, contrasting events occurred in recent years, with substantial drops in hydroelectric generation, notably -6 TWh in 2007, and -4.1 TWh in 2021. Interestingly, solar power generation has been on the rise recently, with solar energy generation leaping by 3.7 TWh in 2022, promising a greener future for Chile’s energy landscape.

Data Sources

For the years 1971 to 1989 the data sources are World Bank and IEA (imports/exports).
For the years 1990 to 2019 the data source is IEA.
For the years 2020 to 2022 the data source is Ember.