in place while hoping to ;nd talent later. Companies have begun to recognize the advantages of project
management and invest in developing new talent, says Bojan Knezovic, CAPM, PMP, head of the PMO
o;ce at Citi’s Chile Technology Services Center, a PMI Global Executive Council member in Santiago,
Chile. But that’s a longer-term solution. Right now, “there are people that have 20 or 30 years’ experience and are skilled, but not in project management. So everyone does the best they can, but they often
fail,” Mr. Knezovic says.
Some of these failures can be attributed to a business and government culture that eschews rigid orga-
nization and project structures, he adds, citing a general disregard for “process, planning and control,
which are what we are trying to implement with project management practices,” he says. “Oftentimes,
implementing a shift in company culture is very di;cult.”
Chilean Sen. Guido Girardi recently summarized his country’s potential and challenges this way: “Chile is
truly a Saudi Arabia of renewable energy, but it lacks vision, policies and decision-making.”
To ;ll in the project management gaps, the government has opened the door to foreign investors and
partnerships. ;is approach will help ensure that utility companies can meet the government-imposed
2025 deadline, especially after they’ve completed relatively straightforward renewable projects and begin
tackling projects complicated by local politics and/or environmental concerns that could cause delays and
But if Chile’s government can go beyond creating ambitious goals and a carbon tax by working to
ensure that private industry, permitting regulations and local stakeholders all move together in the right
direction, it could become a project management model for other South American countries. Conditions aren’t quite where they need to be, but they appear to be turning a corner, says Johannes Dietsche,
general manager of TRITEC-Intervento, a Santiago-based solar energy development company.
Developing renewable projects in Chile “is really complicated compared to Europe,” Mr. Dietsche says.
“But compared with other countries in South America, we think it’s easier to realize projects.” —Clay Dillow
Deforestation is a significant cause of climate change: Every year during the 2000s, 13 million hectares
( 32 million acres)—an area roughly the size of Greece—were deforested, releasing stored carbon into the
atmosphere. Twenty-;ve countries have no forests left, and 29 are down to less than 10 percent of their
original forest cover.
;e problem is clear, yet forest preservation e;orts are complicated by the 1. 6 billion people whose livelihoods depend on forests, including cutting trees down for wood
and pasture lands. To address this quandary, in March 2014 the United Nations called
for an annual US$30 billion investment in tropical forest conservation through REDD+
projects, which allow developed countries to o;set their carbon emissions by funding
forest conservation projects in developing countries—such as Brazil and Indonesia—
where deforestation is most egregious.
REDD stands for “reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in
developing countries.” ;e U.N. formalized it as an approach for combating climate
change in 2008 and later expanded REDD to encompass e;orts to sustainably man-
age and enhance forest carbon stocks—thus “REDD+.”
;e U.N.’s recent call to global action is as ambitious as the stakes are high.
Despite the bumpy history of the REDD+ approach—stakeholder and ;nancial chal-
lenges have cropped up in many projects—the U.N. bills it as a win-win-win for the
environment, investors and forest-dependent communities. REDD+ projects are sup-
posed to slow climate change while stimulating local green industries such as eco-
tourism and sustainable commodities, creating jobs and increasing rural incomes.
Achim Steiner, executive director of the U.N. Environment Programme, said the
“The challenge is
that the project
to be imported. A
lot of the projects
that are being
are with foreign
—Edgar van der Meer, NRG Expert,
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
A farmer in Sovanna
one major cause
of climate change.