Sun sets over a rocky coast in the La Guajira region of Colombia

Photo: Ricardo Arce / Unsplash

While renewable energy needs global expansion in order to head off the worst effects of climate change and limit global warming to 1.5°C, reforms to any given energy grid can lead to negative economic and social consequences for some populations if not done with deliberate attention to minimizing harmful effects.

In the case of Colombia, the energy transition has brought a focus on La Guajira region for its world-class and untapped wind energy potential with the associated need for new transmission infrastructure. However, the legacy of the area’s fossil fuel industry has stoked distrust of and resistance to renewable energy development.

This article examines the consultation process for a new wind energy transmission line in La Guajira using an energy justice lens that prioritizes local buy-in and fairness among different populations. Researchers aim to pinpoint the perceived injustices in the decision-making process that can impede wider acceptance of new energy sources.