Chile embraces sustainability and creates Ministry for the Environment

The agency’s mission will be to ensure the Chilean population’s right to live in a sustainable environment.

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“We are taking a substantive step toward what we believe the future should be: a green economy and a society with greater respect for the environment.” With these words, the president of Chile, Michelle Bachelet, made official the creation of the Ministry for the Environment, which will be in charge of leading and coordinating the government’s environmental policy.

The agency will also have the mission of establishing clear rules and an appropriate legal framework regarding this subject, implementing efficient management and control instruments in order to act as the government’s oversight organization on environmental issues.

During the ceremony, which took place at the La Moneda Palace in Santiago, the head of state highlighted that “the two most important administrative innovations we have set in motion refer to the Environment and Energy” and stressed that “with the law that redesigns our environmental institutionality, we have fulfilled both commitments.”

The legislation contemplates five basic pillars: the Ministry for the Environment, in charge of defining policy and regulation; the Superintendency for the Environment, to act as the core oversight agency; an Environmental Assessment Service, in charge of management issues; the Environmental Tribunal, linked to another bill, and the Council of Ministers for Sustainability, to act as the organization for political deliberation.

With the implementation of the new ministry, the Chilean state seeks to build an environmental policy for the future, based on equity. For the country, it is not only important to have access to material goods or public services, but also to ensure the right of its inhabitants to live in a sustainable environment. “This is also part of the protection that the state should provide its citizens”, concluded the president.

This post is also available in Spanish