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International Cooperation

EPA Collaboration with Chile

Chilean Presidential PalaceLa Moneda, the Chilean Presidential Palace.The U.S.-Chile Free Trade Agreement entered into force in January 2004. Recognizing the importance of protecting the environment while promoting sustainable development, the governments negotiated an associated Environmental Cooperation Agreement, which is the basis for our environmental cooperation. As a global partner in trade and the environment, Chile is a priority country for U.S. environmental cooperation.
 

Explore our work with Chile: 


Highlights

Workshop on Emergency Management and Response

March 2019: EPA, in collaboration with our partner Battelle Memorial Institute, delivered a workshop on environmental emergency response  to an audience of Chilean government representatives in response to an air quality emergency in the Quinteros community, just outside the capital of Santiago.  The workshop focused on development of a response protocol for environmental emergencies, a topic which was not included in Chile’s existing incident command system. The workshop resulted in a best practices guide for environmental emergency management.

Recent Activities

Environmental Governance

EPA has worked with a variety of Chilean Agencies, such as the Environment Superintendency (Superintendencia del MedioambienteExit and the Ministry of Environment Exitto strengthen environmental enforcement and compliance of environmental laws and regulations. Activities have included:
 
  • Development of curricula for judges on adjudicating environmental enforcement cases.
  • Training on inspection and enforcement for the Environment Superintendency (Superintendencia del Medioambiente- SMA) inspectors.
  • Technical consultation and assistance on a variety of environmental enforcement issues as requested.
  • Training and launch of NEPAssist, a tool that facilitates the environmental review process and project planning in relation to environmental considerations. NEPAssist was deployed in Chile EXIT in March 2014.
  • Under Chile’s  leadership, EPA supported the creation of the South American Environmental Enforcement Network (REDSUFICA) -- now Latin American Environmental Enforcement Network (REDLAFICAExit -- bringing together enforcement officials  from Central and South America and the Caribbean to strengthen enforcement and compliance with environmental laws.  2nd annual meeting of South American environmental enforcement networkEPA participated in the annual meeting of the South America Environmental Enforcement Network. (2014)

This work has produced the following selected results:

  • As a result of EPA cooperation with Chile’s Environment Superintendency (SMA), trainers previously taught by EPA have now trained 520 inspectors across Chile.
  • SMA has also adopted a total of 7 new policies/protocols  to enhance environmental protection in the following areas:
    1. Inspections of liquid wastes;
    2. Inspection procedures at thermoelectric plants;
    3. Protocols for the use of Continuous Air Emissions Monitoring;
    4. General enforcement procedures;
    5. Penalty calculation methodology;
    6. Inspection planning procedures; and
    7. Policy on coordination with other sector ministries during inspections. 

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Air Quality

In January 2017, EPA and the Chilean Ministry of Environment launched the Megacities Partnership for the Santiago Metropolitan Region, within the framework of the United States-Chile Environmental Cooperation Agreement. The partnership was designed to help improve air quality, protect the climate and provide important public health benefits. The program culminated with a regional air quality management workshop held September 3-7, 2018 in Santiago.

View the initial launch declaration and the final report.

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Mining

To strengthen institutional capacity in the institutions that govern the mining sector, EPA aimed to build the capacity of Chile’s Ministries of Mining (Ministerio de MineríaExit and Environment (Ministerio del Medio AmbienteExit with a variety of collaborative workshops and information exchanges. Specific efforts intend to increase the capacity of Chilean government representatives regarding:
 
  • Management of environmental aspects of mine closure
  • Abandoned mine risk evaluation
  • Remediation of contaminated mining sites

This work has produced the following selected results:

  • Participants from a variety of Chilean government entities were trained on financial assurance mechanisms in mining.
  • Representatives from over 10 Chilean entities participated in an environmental risk assessment in mining seminar in Santiago, Chile.
  • Representatives from 15 Chilean entities were trained on regulatory structure, characterization, risk assessments, mapping, selection of remedial options and enforcement measures at mining sites.

Public Participation

To increase environmental public participation in decision-making, EPA partnered with the Chilean Ministry of Environment and other Agencies such as the Environmental Evaluation Service (Servicio de Evaluación Ambiental) Exit to build the capacity of Chile’s government institutions in this area. 
 
This work included the delivery of workshops to foster public participation and enhanced government outreach, and exchange best practices.
 
This work has produced the following selected results:
  • Over 60 Chilean representatives were trained in involving the public in environmental decision making.
  • 28,000 public guides for access to environmental information were developed and disseminated.
  • EPA's Public Participation Guide was translated into Spanish.

Environmental Education

To enhance educator knowledge of environmental issues and improve teaching skills in formal and informal programs, EPA partnered with the Chilean Ministry of Environment to exchange best practices. Chilean environmental education workshop in 2013Chilean environmental education workshop. (2013)
 
This work was accomplished through a workshop with Chile’s government agencies and non-government institutions to exchange best practices, as well as a series of workshops geared towards effective learning and teaching about environmental issues in an outdoor setting. EPA also led a seminar designed to help participants in the South of Chile to develop a strategic plan for the Region.
 
To date, over 100 Chilean government and non-government representatives were trained in various environmental education aspects.
 

Agreements and Relevant Documents

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Key Partners

The following links exit the site Exit

US Department of State Chile Ministry of Foreign Relations
Chile Ministry of Environment Chile Ministry of Mining
Chile Superintendencia del Medioambiente  

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Learn More About Chile

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Contacts

For additional information on EPA's work with Chile, contact:
Nadtya Hong
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Office of International and Tribal Affairs (2650R)
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20460
(202)-564-1391