In Chile, roughly 16% of energy consumption comes from the residential sector (CDT, 2019); and the most consumed residential fuel is firewood.

The use of this fuel varies across the country, increasing in the southern regions. In fact, in the XI Region it is estimated that almost all the households use firewood for heating needs (Figure 1).

In national terms, the estimated national residential consumption of firewood is around 7.533.232 solid cubic meters.

Figure 1: Firewood consumption in the Chilean residential sector.
Source: CDT, 2015

The high consumption of firewood, and specially the residential consumption, demands the study and investigation of all the effects generated in the ecosystem. For this reason, the aim of this research area is to study the local, regional and global effects of excessive domestic demand of firewood for heating (i.e. effects like air pollution, forest degradation and climate change).

CDT. 2015. Medición del consumo nacional de leña y otros combustibles sólidos derivados de la madera. Informe Final. 302 pp.

CDT. 2019. Informe final de usos de la energía de los hogares de Chile 2018. 334 pp.

Reyes, R., Schueftan, A., Ruiz, C. 2018. Control de la contaminación atmosférica en un contexto de pobreza de energía en el sur de Chile: Los efectos no deseados de la política de descontaminación. En: Informes técnicos BES, Bosques – Energía – Sociedad, Año 4. N° 9. Marzo 2018. Observatorio de los Combustibles Derivados de la Madera OCDM. Instituto Forestal, Chile. p. 22.

Energy Poverty

State where households have difficulty accessing clean energy sources

Ecosystems and effects

Relation between the use of energy and the environment

Energy Efficiency

Strategies and technologies for efficient use of energy

Energy consumption

Evolution of energy consumption over time