Chile will be the first developing country to establish carbon neutrality by law by 2050

It was within the framework of COP 25 in Madrid that the Minister of Environment, Carolina Schmidt, announced that the Government of Chile will enter a draft law on climate change on Wednesday, December 18, to Congress.

This bill will allow the country to boost and accelerate the transition of Chile towards sustainable development in which governance for climate action in the state is institutionalized, and which will aim to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, as well as mitigation and sectorial adaptation plans considering the protection of water security.

“We will be the first developing country to establish, by law, the carbon neutrality goal by 2050, as science has requested from all countries, to limit the temperature rise to 1.5 ° Celsius. This national goal will force all of us to mobilize to achieve it and will hold different actors of the State accountable,” said Minister Schmidt.

The initiative proposes the obligation for Chile to have a long-term Climate Strategy with a horizon to 2050, as requested by the Paris Agreement. This strategy set targets for mitigation and reduction of emissions by sector, as well as specific measures and indicators of adaptation and mandatory adaptation plans for the different industries.

The law will also recognize the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) as an intermediate goal on the path to carbon neutrality.

Likewise, and after being requested transversally in the process of citizen participation, the project included the protection of water security, with the prioritization of human consumption, given the countless cases of water scarcity that we have, such as droughts. The associated management instrument will be the strategic watershed management plans developed by the General Water Direction (DGA) and which will be mandated by law.

Regarding the implementation of actions to face climate change, the project establishes responsibility in the productive areas that will have sector goals defined in the Long-Term Climate Strategy, and they will define the most efficient way to achieve mitigation objectives.

As a general principle, the project establishes that the citizens have access to information related to programs, projects, instruments, actions on climate change; and, citizen participation in the elaboration and updating of climate change management instruments.

In addition, a scientific committee will be created with environmental, economic and social experts among others, in order to have expert support and vision for the development and evaluation of public policies. Furthermore, the Ministry of Education with specific responsibilities and powers is included in the development of a capacity-building strategy. For these reasons, both the Ministry of Science and the Ministry of Education will become part of the Council of Ministers for Sustainability.