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Global Onshore Wind Market Report

Key Regional Markets


Onshore Wind Capacity

15.3 GW

GDP (Current Prices) USD (2022)


GDP Growth Forecast (constant prices) (2023-2027)



Chilean Peso

Country Credit Rating (S&P)


Renewable Energy capacity (2022)


Onshore Wind Share in Renewables (2022)


Renewable Energy Target

Sourcing 70% of its total energy consumption from renewables by 2030 and decarbonise the electricity grid by 2050

In the past decade, Chile has experienced a significant transformation in its energy sector, shifting from conventional energy sources to renewables. Today, the country stands as a leading force in renewable energy generation in Latin America. This impressive transition can be attributed to legislative support, advancements in renewable technologies, and the rise of public-private partnerships. The Chilean government has made ambitious commitments, aiming to transition to a clean economy. Their goal is to achieve 70% of energy consumption from renewable sources by 2030 and fully decarbonize the system by 2050 (World Economic Forum, 2023), focusing on non-hydro renewable technologies like wind and solar.

Chile’s renewable energy sector, especially wind energy, holds vast untapped potential. To fully harness this potential, the government recognises the need for stringent policy reforms and infrastructural advancements. These efforts are crucial to accelerate the growth of wind energy in the region and solidify Chile’s position as a frontrunner in the renewable energy landscape of Latin America.


  • Renewable auctions predefined for long-term PPAs and amendments of PPA power supply contract duration are set to uptake the sector

  • Amplified funding initiatives especially for onshore wind projects to increase its capacity growth


  • Increased VRE curtailment in the advent of inadequate transmission network to stymie onshore wind growth trajectory

  • Increased opposition from Indigenous communities for wind farms led to the rejection of consecutive projects and delayed commissions of existing ones

Renewable Energy Mix

Source: IRENA Renewable Capacity Statistics July 2023

Over the last decade, Chile has witnessed a transformative shift in its renewable energy landscape, transitioning from a heavy reliance on renewable hydropower to embracing wind and solar energy. This shift was necessitated by recurring instances of drought that hampered power supply, leading to a 43% decline in the share of renewable hydropower between 2012 and 2022. During this period, onshore wind energy’s contribution to the renewable mix surged by 17%, rising from 3% in 2012 to an impressive 20% in 2022 (IRENA, 2023).

Authorities are now focusing on ramping up renewable projects by developing electromobility and transmission infrastructure. Strategic initiatives like the Just Transition Strategy have been introduced to accelerate the deployment of onshore wind energy (IEA, 2020). These forward-thinking policies and investments are pivotal in ensuring Chile’s continued progress towards a sustainable, carbon-neutral future.

Installed Capacity: Status and Trend

Trend in Installed Onshore Wind Capacity

Source: Preqin Global Report 2023: Private Equity

Chile’s onshore wind capacity experienced a notable acceleration in growth from 2020, marking a departure from previous years of moderate or near-stagnant annual expansion rates. The peak installations were recorded in 2021, showcasing a significant surge in the country’s wind energy infrastructure. Despite a minor dip in 2022, where capacity additions remained above 500MW (IRENA, 2023), rising project costs and fluctuating interest rates were identified as key factors influencing this decline (IEA, 2023).

One of the challenges faced in the onshore wind sector involves the integration of communal and indigenous approvals, which often leads to procedural delays in the commencement of wind farm projects. These delays have contributed to a slower-than-desired pace of growth in the industry. Furthermore, onshore wind’s contribution to the Small Distributed Generation Facilities (PMGD) segment remains relatively low. As of April 2023, data from the National Electricity Coordinator indicates that out of 2.2GW of PMGD capacities, only 3% is derived from wind energy sources (Electromineria, 2023). This highlights the need for robust policies and strong local support to bolster the onshore wind sector, ensuring consistent gigawatt-scale annual additions and reinforcing Chile’s position as a frontrunner in renewable energy adoption.

Demand Drivers

Chile’s energy landscape is undergoing a profound transformation, with ambitious targets to phase out coal usage by 2030 and decommission coal power plants by 2040. Already, significant progress has been made, with 7 out of 28 coal-fired plants retired and plans to decommission three more by 2025 (Energy Partnership, 2021). The government’s commitment to boycotting investments in coal power plants without carbon capture and storage has catalysed a shift in the energy sector. Over the past decade, there has been a 19% decline in electricity generated from non-renewable sources, matched by a 19% increase in renewables, according to IRENA. This transition has created a significant power generation gap of 65%, providing a ripe opportunity for renewable technologies like wind and solar to fill the void. To expedite this transition, a strategic policy push is essential, encouraging rapid project allocation and development.

Chilean authorities have introduced technology-neutral auctions for long-term Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) exceeding 15 years to support the renewable energy sector. The 2021 auctions were oversubscribed, and the 2022 auctions exclusively featured bids from wind, solar, and storage technologies (Renewables Now, 2022), indicating a clear shift away from hydropower. This market-oriented approach, devoid of subsidies, has garnered substantial investor interest in Chile. In 2023, the government plans to auction 5,400GWh of electricity tender in two rounds, encompassing wind, solar, hydropower, storage, and non-variable renewables. Notably, bid rules have been modified, extending the PPA power supply contract duration from 15 to 20 years, mitigating developers’ price risks and incentivizing storage projects (PV Magazine, 2023).

A notable initiative is Chile’s focus on ramping up green hydrogen production using low-cost renewable sources. To support this effort, Chile’s Economic Development Agency (CORFO) has allocated $50 million for six projects, including one powered by a local wind farm in the Magallanes region in the south (ENLIT, 2022). The World Bank has also approved $150 million in loans for green energy development in Chile (World Bank, 2023). As investments in green hydrogen generation accelerate, Chile aims to leverage affordable technologies like wind and solar for electrolysis, further boosting their demand and integration into the country’s energy mix. These strategic initiatives underscore Chile’s commitment to a sustainable and renewable energy future, positioning it as a leader in the global energy transition.

Market Opportunity

Chile stands out as one of the most attractive emerging markets for renewable energy development, supported by its swift transition towards clean energy. Structured renewable auctions, ambitious targets, and grid management initiatives have made Chile a magnet for investments, drawing approximately $20.8 billion over the past seven years for renewable energy projects. Its organised electricity system bolsters, enables standardized PPA auctions in USD denominations (BloombergNEF, 2022). Developers can engage in bilateral contracts outside the regulated market with major consumers, leading to substantial investments. Noteworthy PPAs include agreements between Atlas and Enel for 417MW (Power Technology, 2022) and AES and Google for 110MW (Renewables Now, 2022), showcasing Chile’s potential as a hub for renewable energy collaborations.

Hybrid projects, particularly those integrating wind, solar, and storage technologies, have gained significant traction in Chile. The capital expenditure in the country’s renewable energy projects is projected to reach $7.9 billion, primarily focused on constructing over 9GW of non-hydro renewable projects, predominantly in the Atacama Desert in the northern Antofagasta region. A substantial portion of these upcoming projects adopts a hybrid approach, combining wind and solar elements. For instance, a 1.2GW wind plus solar project, along with 500kV transmission lines and substations developed by Spain’s Grupo Ibereólica, represents a major investment of $874 million (BNAMERICAS, 2023). Additionally, Energía Eólica Paposo has received approval for an 862.5MW wind-solar-battery storage hybrid project involving a $750 million investment (Renewables Now, 2023). Companies like EDPR and Enel Power Chile have also obtained approvals for separate hybrid wind-plus-solar farms with a combined capacity of 609MW, highlighting the growing trend towards integrated renewable energy solutions.

However, the rapid deployment of renewable projects has exposed challenges related to inefficient transmission networks, leading to issues like electricity dumping. In response, the Chilean government has taken proactive measures, passing a bill to accelerate energy storage and electromobility investments. Plans are underway to tender two storage systems with a combined capacity of 2GW in 2024 (BNAMERICAS, 2023). The energy sector regulator, CNE, has also outlined initiatives to expand electricity transmission, earmarking a total investment of $1.45 billion for 48 grid infrastructure projects (BNAMERICAS, 2023). Moreover, a 1,500km High-Definition Variable Current (HDVC) powerline is set to become operational by 2028, with an estimated cost of $1.4 billion, aimed at alleviating the curtailment of Variable Renewable Energy (VRE) sources (AX LEGAL, 2023). These strategic interventions underscore Chile’s commitment to overcoming infrastructure challenges and consolidating its position as a renewable energy powerhouse.


Source: BNEF Global Wind Market Outlook

Chile’s onshore wind sector is poised for significant growth, with projections indicating the addition of over 4.5GW capacity between 2023-2027. These forecasts highlight the country’s rapid expansion in renewable energy, specifically in wind power. However, despite these optimistic prospects, the sector faces several challenges that impede its growth.

One major obstacle is the inadequacy of the transmission network. Chile needs advanced distribution infrastructure, transmission lines, and storage facilities to effectively support the increased deployment of renewable energy. Estimates suggest that retiring 5.5GW of coal power would require more than 22GW of renewable capacity and storage systems. Additionally, the disparity between power generation and consumption locations has led to Variable Renewable Energy (VRE) curtailment, reaching 6% in 2022. To address this issue, the authorities have planned the construction of a major north-south power line, Kimal-Lo Aguirre, expected to enter service by 2030 (BNAMERICAS, 2023). However, more storage and transmission networks are crucial to fully resolve this challenge.

Furthermore, there is opposition from indigenous communities against wind farms, leading to delays in permitting and commissioning. Recent instances, such as the Kudawfe Peñi Indigenous Community’s veto against the Parque Eólico Viento Sur wind project, have resulted in setbacks (Electromineria, 2023). Additionally, onshore wind faces stiff competition from solar energy, which outperformed wind in recent technology-neutral auctions, adding to the sector’s concerns.

Despite these challenges, the untapped potential of onshore wind in Chile continues to shape the outlook for its growth. Moreover, the growing focus on hybrid projects and policy initiatives supporting storage and grid management presents opportunities for the onshore wind sector.