Brazil has this week joined the International Energy Agency as an Association country, opening new avenues of cooperation for the South American behemoth in its transition toward a more secure and sustainable energy future.
Latin America’s largest country, Brazil has also been one of the world’s top emitters of greenhouse gas, and has been at the heart of deforestation campaigns for decades. This week, the International Energy Agency (IEA) and Brazil jointly announced that the country has joined the IEA 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.”
So far there are seven IEA Association countries — China, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Singapore, Thailand, and now Brazil.
“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 Fernando Coelho Filho, Brazilian Minister of Mines and Energy.
The announcement (PDF) recognizes the need for Brazil to step up, and the existing work done by Brazil and the IEA, and expresses “the intention of developing new avenues of cooperation in the initial shared areas of Association and beyond.” Specifically,
“This Association provides Brazil with a platform for regular dialogue with the IEA, its members and Association countries, through the participation in meetings of IEA Standing groups and Committees and Ministerial Meetings; and will enable the IEA to receive the inputs from Brazil in its deliberations, adding to the diversity of views in the meetings.”
“Brazil’s experience shows that policies do matter,” said Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director. “Its determined and ambitious long-term energy policies, developing deep-water oil resources and expanding biofuels output, set an example to countries around the world. As a result, our latest data shows that Brazil will become a net oil exporter this year, the first major consumer in recent history to ever achieve such a turnaround.”
Folding Brazil into the IEA’s network will help to expand the country’s export of its numerous areas of expertise — such as bioenergy, as well as hydropower and other forms of clean and conventional energy. The IEA also highlighted Brazil’s experience in managing the integration of renewable energy into its energy mix and its use of auctions for long-term electricity contracts.
Brazil and the IEA are already planning to work together across a wide variety of energy-related activities, including the implementation of The Biofuture Platform, “which aims to promote international coordination on advanced low carbon fuels.” The IEA will also support the development of Brazil’s ten-year energy efficiency plan, as well as co-host an energy efficiency training event in Brazil to share regional and global experiences.