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Road to Carbon Neutral project begins, it seeks to reduce 22% of emissions in Colombia

15 April 2021, 15:00 BST 3 min read

Press release published in partnership with OpEPA and The Climate Reality Project Latin America. 

Thanks to the support of UK PACT ColombiaOpEPA, the Climate Group and The Climate Reality Project Latin America have developed the first project in Colombia that will set long-term visions to reduce the country’s GHG emissions by approximately 22%. The project will focus on energy and transportation sectors, two of the most polluting industries in the top five Colombian departments with the highest emissions, to catalyse the transition to low carbon economy, promote a just economic recovery and mitigate the effects of the climate crisis.

Road to Carbon Neutral sets the pathway towards a sustainable future that will transform Colombia into a resilient country against climate change, whose effects are intensifying, becoming more frequent and generating greater disasters. It also fortifies the 2050 goal of net zero carbon emissions announced by President Duque’s government as part of the commitments to the Paris Agreement.

The project will empower, inform, train and build consensus among government, entrepreneurs, journalists and society to reduce at least 42.94MtCO2e of Colombia’s emissions, ensure a long-term sustainable development in Antioquia, Bogotá, Boyacá, Cundinamarca and Valle del Cauca, the departments with the highest GHG emissions in energy and transportation sectors, and will communicate the visions to citizens. The emissions reduction foreseen as a part of the project is comparable to taking more than 9 million cars off the road for a year.

Road to Carbon Neutral in Colombia will implement a holistic vision in the transport and energy sectors where the decision makers will be able to choose solutions to move towards sustainable mobility and, in terms of energy, they will have the opportunity to decide which actions can be implemented to have access to a cheaper and cleaner energy portfolio.

Luis Camargo, OpEPA Executive Director, said: “The project is fundamental for Colombia’s energy and transport sectors. It will work to establish pathways to help decarbonise five key regions and amplify new narratives that help Colombians understand better how transitioning towards a low-carbon future is essential for our country and planet.”

According to Tim Ash Vie, Director of the Under2 Coalition Secretariat at the Climate Group, “Our project aims to facilitate transformative change. With a focus on the transport and energy sectors, it will help state and regional governments to establish a pathway to achieve their long term emissions reduction goals as well as social and economic benefits for all.”

Ken Berlin, President and CEO of The Climate Reality Project, concluded: "This project is fundamental to decarbonisation in Colombia, particularly in the energy and transport sectors. We are proud to work alongside UK PACT, OpEPA and the Climate Group in building low carbon pathways with Colombia’s subnational decision makers."

The project will conclude in March 2022 and will be divided in three phases where citizenship, governments, community leaders and journalists will work closely. Road to Carbon Neutral and the decarbonisation visions generated will be aligned with the development goals of each department and will contribute to the accomplishment of the Nationally Determined Contributions and Colombia's Long-Term Climate Strategy (#E2050). So, in addition to reaching the emissions reduction, these actions will improve communities life quality and will promote their economic, scientific and technological development.