Mexico Declares War On Renewable Energy

National Economy

The population of the United Mexican States (Mexico) is approximately 130.66 million people[1]. In 2019, 100% of the people in this North American country had access to electricity[2].

In 2019, Mexico’s economy was ranked 15th in the world in gross domestic product (GDP)[3]. The country’s economy is heavily dependent on the export of automobiles, computers, trucks, crude oil, tractors, beer, and tropical fruits[4].

Environment Policies

In 2016, Mexico signed the Paris Climate Agreement[5], committing to a 25% reduction in greenhouse gases from a business-as-usual scenario by 2030.

In 2018, Andrés Manuel López Obrador was elected the President and instituted policies to reinvigorate the state-owned national oil company, Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX).

In 2019, Mexico’s state-owned electricity utility, Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) announced it would not initiate any further tenders for renewable energy.

In 2020, CFE used natural gas (59.8 %), renewable energy (21.1 %), oil (11.2 %), coal (4.2 %), and nuclear energy (3.7 %) to generate electricity in Mexico[6]. Hydropower, wind, solar, and geothermal are the primary types of renewable energy used to generate electricity in Mexico.

Recent renewable energy projects in Mexico include:

  • 350 MW Solar Project – CFE announced plans to build a 350 MW solar park at a site approximately 100 miles east of the city of Tijuana in northwest Mexico. The solar park will be built in two stages. The 1st stage, Cerro Prieto is scheduled to be commissioned in 2023 and the 2nd stage, Cerro Prieto III is scheduled to be commissioned in 2029.
  • 50 MW Wind Project – Spanish renewable energy company, Elecnor is continuing work on the Eólica Coromuel wind project at a site approximately 800 miles southeast of Tijuana.

Conclusions

Mexico has been exporting crude oil since 1911[7]. The export of crude oil is still a major component in the country’s economy. However, oil production has steadily fallen over the past decade. In 2012, Mexico produced over 2.6 million barrels of oil per day. In 2020, Mexico produced less than 1.7 million barrel oil per day.

Mexico’s electricity demand is forecast to steadily increase due to an improving economy and a growing population. Mexico’s state-owned utility, CFE has stated it intends to rely heavily on domestic oil and gas production to meet the country’s growing electricity requirements.

Mexico has significant, undeveloped renewable energy resources, including solar, wind, and geothermal. However, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has stopped any new renewable energy projects, mocked wind farms as “fans” that blight the landscape, and spent U.S. $9 billion in the construction of a new oil refinery[8].

Sadly, the President of Mexico has declared war on renewable energy.  

Jack Kerfoot

Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”

www.jack kerfoot.com

 

[1] Mexico Population (2021) –  October 1, 2021, 2021 www.worldometers.info

[2] Mexico – The World Bank Group

[3] Gross Domestic Product 2019 – World Bank DataBank

[4] OEC – United Mexican States (Mexico)

[5] Carbon Brief – “2015: Tracking Country Climate Pledges”

[6] Our World In Data, Mexico: Energy Country Profile by Hanna Ritchie and Max Roser

[7] “Petroleum: Pre-1938” in Encyclopedia of Mexico by Jonathan C. Brown, 1997

[8] Los Angeles Times, “For Mexico’s President, The Future Isn’t Renewable Energy — It’s Coal” by Gary Coronado, April 12, 2021

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