Global Forum on Sustainable Development

Columbia University. International Research Institute for Climate and Society

Located between two of the largest countries in South America, namely Brazil and Argentina, Uruguay has a relatively small territory (176,000 km ) and a population of approximately 3.2 million. With a vast proportion of its land under natural grasslands (approximately 80%), Uruguay’s economy is largely dependent, directly and indirectly, on the agricultural and livestock sector.

Similarly to most countries in the world during the last decade, the Uruguayan general public and the political administrations have become increasingly aware of global environmental threats such as climate change and atmospheric contamination. Since 1990 Uruguay started to develop national greenhouse gas (GHG) inventories using the IPCC methodology. These inventories have generated new interests regarding potential opportunities for the national agriculture, forestry and energy sectors to contributetomitigatingglobalclimatechangethroughactivitiesthatresultinnetCO sequestration.

The first objective of this article is to review the current situation regarding the opportunities for three sectors in Uruguay to address climate change. To this end, we assess Uruguay’s GHG emissions and economic performance before reviewing policies, plans and regulations which resulted in land use changes and new forested areas with significant implications for climate change. A second objective of the article is to explore possible legal actions and programs that can result in both socioeconomic development and an increased ability to mitigate climate change. This objective is met by exploring recent policies, plans and regulations that explicitly consider global environmental issues and the climate change mitigation potential of the agriculture, forestry and energy sectors.


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Academic Units
International Research Institute for Climate and Society
Published Here
March 13, 2024

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