MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, May 28th 2023 - 02:23 UTC



Lack of political support freezes Chile’s biggest multi-dam project

Friday, June 1st 2012 - 06:46 UTC
Full article 25 comments

Chile’s biggest dam project involving 7 billion dollars and already delayed by protests over plans to flood 14,000 acres of Patagonia wilderness, suffered a fresh setback after one of its investors said the venture lacks political support to proceed. Read full article


Disclaimer & comment rules
  • The Chilean perspective

    They will wait until there's a “Socialist” Gov. in power before they go ahead. All the big businesses know that the ignorant majority in Chile will readily let the leftists insert a pineapple sideways up them with a smile. It's just a matter of perception, when the right screws them they go out to on the streets and burn buses and shit, but when the left does it, they smile and take it all the way.

    Jun 01st, 2012 - 08:04 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Simon68

    That makes them the same as us Argentines!!!!

    Jun 01st, 2012 - 01:43 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Think

    Momio, “The Chilean perspective” meets Gorila “Simon68”…

    What a perfect transnational brotherhood couple…

    Both detest the “Disgraceful Ignorant Majority”…

    Them being the “Graceful Educated Minority”…

    Chuckle chuckle©

    Jun 01st, 2012 - 02:01 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Simon68

    3 Think (#)
    Jun 01st, 2012 - 02:01 pm

    Thanks for “Graceful Educated...“ but after Anibal Fernández's statement about his savings in dollars, I don't think minority is the right word. Having called the whole Argentine People ”stupid“ I think the next step is a replay of De la Rua's escape from la Casa Rosada. ”Helicópteros para todos y todas.”

    Jun 01st, 2012 - 02:13 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Marcos Alejandro


    Jun 01st, 2012 - 02:22 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Simon68

    5 Marcos Alejandro (#)
    Jun 01st, 2012 - 02:22 pm

    I am extremely proud to be thought a “gorila”. Anybody who has “dos dedos de frente” will be annoyed by Fernández's ridiculous hypocricy. The man is an idiot, the same as Kretina and the rest of her troupe.

    Jun 01st, 2012 - 02:47 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Think

    (6) Simon 68

    The Anibal Fernández's of this world are NOT an Argentinean prerogative.

    Name any Country in the world…... Any Country.
    I could Google hundreds like him….
    In just a few minutes….

    Having said that……………..

    I prefer 1,000,000,000 times a stereotypical elected politician like Anibal Fernandez in charge of my Country than your Gorilla heroes.

    Heroes like your general Videla, general Pinochet, general Galtieri…

    Killing our youth, stealing our babies, assassinating our nuns and priests…

    All in the name of “Western Values”, “Common Decency” and “Jesus Christ”….

    Nunca Más

    Jun 01st, 2012 - 06:46 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Condorito

    Simon / ChileanP,
    I concur with your analysis, it is true however Think chooses to melodramatise it. Endesa who have billions of dollars riding on it know it is true. If Piñera wants HydroAysen to go ahead it is all because of vested interests and big business buying off politicians. If Bachelet wants HydroAysen the public will be more likely to swallow it. Most people follow their political colours on these issues.

    How Think manages to get from here to going off on a loony tangent rambling about Pinochet and killing nuns, only a troll would understand.

    But sticking to the topic...
    I think a couple of years to cool the issue is not a bad thing. There is a lot for the public to digest and carving up one of the world’s most beautiful wildernesses should not be done rashly if at all.

    The mining industry needs the power to increase production, but what is wrong with maintaining production? Copper is a finite resource, we have about 25% of global reserves, so why are we in a hurry to sell all the family silver. We should leave some of the “sueldo de Chile” for our children and grandchildren.

    If the miners are planning on investing $100billion can we not demand that, say for every billion they invest in the mine, they invest a million in setting up technology clusters. We must diversify away from just digging holes in the ground and cutting down trees if the future generations are to enjoy prosperity too.

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 12:33 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • The Chilean perspective

    I'm not a Pinochetista. In fact I think that the coup was totally unnecessary.
    I am however a fiscal conservative and you should know that in Chile ignorance is not linked to your socio economic status. There are probably just as many idiots in the more well to do suburbs.
    As for your statement, I think that the word “detest” is a little too affectionate to describe the way I feel towards these losers.
    These animals are going to stall the development of Chile when we are so close to reaching the point of no return. That point where it all suddenly becomes clear to all, that this is the right path for the nation. A point that South Korea reached in the 80's and Singapore in the 90's. Currently we are in a place and time where all the accomplishments can be reversed and take us right back to the 3rd world. This is a real danger as we can see that even the so called rightist Piñera is handing out tax payer money like crazy with all his ridiculously expensive and inefficient subsidies. I think he is more of a socialist than Bachelet or Andres Velasco.
    Anyway I'll get off my soap box for now, and viva the free market.

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 12:52 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Simon68

    7 Think (#)
    Jun 01st, 2012 - 06:46 pm

    I don't understand how you managed to get from the despicable Fernández to Pinochet and Videla. I suppose you consider anyone who disaproves of the peronistas in all their different colours to be supporters of the despicable dictators that helped to destroy our country during the 60s, 70s, and early 80s. If so you are less intelligent than I thought, you occasionally show a certain amount of intelligence but obviously you are just another brainwashed peronist troll.

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 01:09 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Condorito

    Is HydroAysen as critical to our progress as you say?
    I am still undecided on the issue. Do we really need to carve up Aysen to take that next step?
    Can you point me to a concise report on the pros and cons. I need some help making my mind up.

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 01:25 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Think

    (8) Condorito
    You say:
    ”Simon / ChileanP…., I concur with your analysis; it is true however Think chooses to melodramatize it”

    I say:
    Not difficult, in our Countries, to politically label individuals as “Mr. The Chilean Perspective” stating things like……….:
    ”Ignorant majority in Chile” (irrespective of their socio economic status)
    “Idiots”, “losers”, “animals” (about the same vast majority of Chileans, including this humble Argentino)
    Or “Mr. Simon68” stating the same things, with the aggregate that he wants to see all of us shot……
    The rest of your points in this comment; I fully agree with….

    (10) Simon68
    You say:
    “I suppose you consider anyone who disapproves of the Peronistas in all their different colors to be supporters of the despicable dictators that helped to destroy our Country during the 60s, 70s, and early 80s.”

    I say:
    Well…… That’s your problem…You “suppose too much, you don’t read what is written and you don’t “Think”………..

    And yes,…..I consider an Argentinean that states things like…: “I am extremely proud to be tought as a “Gorila”, or….: ”The majority of Argentineans are ignorants”, or….: “They should all be shot”….; to be an active supporter of dictatorships.

    (11) Condorito
    You say:
    “I am still undecided on the issue……. I need some help making my mind up.”

    I say:
    La letra, con musica, entra …..:

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 06:43 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Condorito

    Well I am glad that you agree with most of my points. I still think you are melodramatic. I understand phrases like “ignorant majority”, I might not use that phrase myself, but I am capable of understanding what ChileanP means without trading insults and then going off on a tangent. I was hoping ChileanP would come back in on this discussion, he seems to have a good understanding of Chile’s economic position and I want to see some really convincing arguments for HydroAysen.

    Thanks for the links. Calle 13 with Inti, good stuff. I am always suspect of musicians with a political cause and they kind of give the superficiality away at the end of the clip when a photo of Torres del Paine appears with the text no dams in Patagonia. But good music.

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 02:16 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Simon68

    12 Think (#)
    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 06:43 am

    I assume that you consider yourself part of Kretina's troupe of performing fleas then, as these are the ones I said ought to be shot. You really don't THINK do you?

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 03:51 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Think

    (13) Condorito

    What you call “melodrama”, we call “history”………
    Did this part of our “history” touched you personally?

    You seem to consider the Hidroaysén issue as a “melodrama” too….
    We, in Patagonia, call it “reality”. Does this part of “reality” touch you personally?

    Please, continue being suspicious about ”musicians with a political cause”…..
    But remember to be suspicious about businessmen with an economical cause as well!

    Glad you liked the link anyhow……….
    Calle 13, Camila Moreno e Inti Illimani ruled Viña that day!

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 03:54 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Marcos Alejandro

    6 Simon68 Are you typing from jail? Poor “gorila”...enjoy your stay.

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 05:51 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Condorito

    To answer your questions: yes and yes.
    What I said was melodrama was your jump from ChileanP’s language to the dictatorship.

    How does hidroaysen affect you on your side of Patagonia?

    Jun 02nd, 2012 - 09:17 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Think

    (17) Condorito
    Normally, before responding to a poster, I read several of its comments first.
    Mr. “The Momio Perspective” has just that kind of perspective.
    Easy for him to declare that he is not a Pinochetista but….
    Every comment of his exudes a total disrespect for any genuine democratic process.
    And his deep love for, at best, the“Democracia calificada” system.
    Been there, done that………..

    You ask further, how Hidroaysén will affect me….?
    Firstly; I will have to ride under those gloomy transmission lines and their ominous crackling every time I ride into Coyhaique.......

    Secondly; the Rio Baker valley happens to be one of my favorite horse riding areas in the world........

    Thirdly; everybody, and I really mean EVERYBODY, I personally know in Aysén and Magallanes is vehemently opposed to this project in its present form........

    There are established and proven ways to harness the hydro-electrical potential of a river without damming (and damning) it.

    The transmission lines can and should be buried underground instead. (This is even the best long term TECHNICAL solution)

    It is only a question of will (And money)

    Nó a Hidroaysén
    El Think

    Jun 03rd, 2012 - 07:22 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • The Chilean perspective

    What really get under my skin is the fact that the Aysen project has been hijacked by people who are determined to hurt Chile. These people do not want to admit that to merely continue the current growth rate Chile must triple the power output within 10 yrs. They instead want to reduce use and to build some airy fairy solar or wind farms. Everyone knows that you need a solid electrical infrastructure and that solar & wind are only ancillary. In a distant future perhaps this may change but for now they are a weak source of power. Furthermore as an energy poor country we send obscene amounts of Dollars overseas every year because of our fuel imports. Aysen changes this. The fuel is Chilean water, forever free. The electricity generated would have cost billions of Dollars in imported fuel. This is replaced and the money stays in Chile where it can be spent on improving the nation. Free fuel forever, the only cost is the initial construction.
    The construction of 5 new artificial lakes, which in itself is a beautiful new tourist feature potentially for fishing, boating, etc. and the flooding of a small 6,000 hectares (Disney world is 12,173 hectares) is small fry in a massive uninhabited land. As for the transmission towers, they need to clear an area about 70 mts wide, and natural vegetation would soon grow bellow again . No drama.
    We must learn from Norway where power comes almost entirely from hydroelectric power plants.
    This project, for a clear thinker, has little potential downside as compared to the massive gain. It speaks for it self.
    The current gov. sadly seems to have lost the support of the people.
    I hope that future governments can focus and keep the economic momentum going, and that they don't get misled by anti development ratbags.
    I would like so much to see a prosperous Chile in my lifetime.

    Jun 03rd, 2012 - 08:14 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Think

    (19) More “pearls” from “Mr.The Momio Perspective”

    1) ”….Hijacked by people who are determined to hurt Chile”
    (Momio definition for….: Concerned citizens that want the best for Chile.)

    2) “The fuel is Chilean water, forever free.”
    (Momio speach for….: The fuel was Chilean water, forever sold by Pinochet’s dictatorship to foreigners for their own usufruct.)

    3) “The money stays in Chile where it can be spent on improving the Nation.
    (Momio speach for….: Most of the money goes to the owners Nation (currently Italy) where it can be spent on improving their Nation.)

    4) “… Anti development ratbags.”
    (Yet another Momio definition for….: Concerned citizens that want the best for their Country.)


    Jun 03rd, 2012 - 09:47 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • The Chilean perspective

    @ Think...
    Your rebuttals clearly show that you are just another one of these anti Chilean, anti progress, leftist, conservationist ignoramuses.
    If ever there was a project that you .........traitors????.... this may be too strong a word... errr.. hypocrites........(that's better). Should get behind, it's this one.
    Unfortunately you people think that families can survive on love alone, and that if there ever needs to be some heavy lifting some other guy (momio) can do it for you. Your way of thinking is what keeps Chile underdeveloped, and as long as the masses think like you they deserve to live the way most of them do. On a lousy 350 thousand pesos a month.
    I hope for your and Chile's sake you change before its too late, because most middle income countries have been here before, fucked up and missed the bus. Only a handful have made it to the next level.
    This reminds me of Singapore in the 80's. Many Singaporeans were dead set against Lee kuan yew's policies, protesting burning shit, creating havoc etc.
    Today their per capita income is US$50,324 (comp. Chile $15,453) and they don't give two shits when the gov builds new infrastructure, like for example the new Marina Barrage damming project. We must study these success stories carefully. If a nation whose only resource is their citizens can achieve this level, then we can soar even higher.

    Jun 04th, 2012 - 02:17 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Condorito

    ”….Hijacked by people who are determined to hurt Chile”
    There is a certain amount of truth in this. Last year this issue was hijacked to a large extent by the student protests that morphed in to general anti-government protests. The Hidroaysen debate was swallowed up in the noise.

    “The money stays in Chile where it can be spent on improving the Nation”
    I also agree with this. The money would stay here, in that we would import less fuel. I have no problem with foreign companies taking their profits as I have no problem with Chilean companies investing in Peru and Argentina.

    I completely agree with you on the issue of transmission lines, but I don’t know how economically feasible it is to put them underground. Are there any cost comparisons you have seen?

    You are right that there are ways to use submerged turbines in rivers to generate electricity, but it is experimental technology and I imagine one of the problems is that you can’t buffer the flow.

    You are certainly right that no one in Aysen wants the dams, but if it is in the overwhelming interest of the nation, they will have to take one for the team.

    There was an interesting interview in the Mercurio yesterday with a former energy minister you made the point: Chile is the only country in the world where environmentalist have prioritised the landscape over carbon emissions.

    Part of Singapur’s success is that it has become a entrepreneurial business hub for asia. Even with Hidroaysen we will fail to break out of middle income if we don’t diversify and develop indigenous industries.

    PS: In Singapur I understand the punishment for graffiti is beating. I think we should start right there..

    Jun 04th, 2012 - 02:28 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • The Chilean perspective

    Energy in Chile today is punishingly expensive. Next door in Argentina they got industry going by drastically subsidizing energy. For Chile this would be a bad idea, but it's the price and reliability of energy that MUST...I repeat MUST be fixed before we can expect industry to grow at a faster rate than currently.
    Power, rail, roads,ports and red tape. Fix these and the sky is the limit. We HAVE the “all access pass” to most of the worlds economies (FTA). We have the labor force (inc. the availability of massive foreign labor if needed). We have the universities to churn out more skilled personnel, We have the solid financial system and stock exchange. We have the low tax rates. All we need is the will and you could potentially see a massive acceleration of economic development as companies from other Latin American countries and the world set up in Chile. We already have the second highest direct investment in South America. It can be done.

    Jun 05th, 2012 - 02:26 am - Link - Report abuse 0
  • ManRod

    Indeed energy is very expensive in Chile, how much does 1 kw/h cost?
    Arround 140 pesos chilenos, which is about 22 Eurocents.
    Same cost as in Germany and higher than in many other countries in the European union. So then, what is the problem about applying the most diverse technologies available? We only get excuses!

    The demand is high, we have clearly the highest per capita consumption of energy in whole Latin America, the economic margins can be big.
    There are no excuses not to apply most modern and clean energies, like solar or eolic installations. Except the lobbies... probably. Which prefer dirty and “cheap” coal-fired plants.
    I simply don't get it. Why don't we get eolic installations done?
    We have plenty of this natural energy.

    Jun 05th, 2012 - 02:35 pm - Link - Report abuse 0
  • Condorito

    Wind power is unreliable and to produce it in significant quantities you need kilometres of wind turbines just to power a small town. Tidal power and submerged turbines are still experimental and they will meet lots of environmental resistance once they become a reality.

    I broadly agree with you that “Power, rail, roads, ports and red tape” can all be improved to help Chilean growth, but reducing the cost of power won’t diversify the economy. Lower energy costs will help established industries, not necessarily create new ones. Lower energy costs will boost BHP el al’s profits (and leave more money in government coffers), but the miners will still import all the machinery they need.

    Jun 05th, 2012 - 04:42 pm - Link - Report abuse 0

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!