Bruno Riga
Country Manager
Enel Mexico
/
Expert Contributor

From Capture to Commercialization for an Equal Energy Transition

By Bruno Riga | Thu, 08/25/2022 - 11:00

Environmental deterioration is an issue that concerns and worries global society. This emergency is related to climate change, costing around US$650 billion between 2016 and 2018.[1] The United Nations estimates that if no action is taken, by 2050, the global cost of adapting to climate impacts will be between US$280 billion and US$500 billion per year.[2]

Among the tools to face this new reality are renewable energy sources. It is estimated that by 2026, renewable capacity could increase to 4,800GW, which entails a 60 percent increase compared to 2020 levels. This is equivalent to the total global power capacity generated by fossil fuels and nuclear energy.[3]

Rethinking our relationship with our environment requires a long-term strategy. An example of this is the report of the United Nations Human Development Program (UNDP), which has a 2022-2025 plan to achieve a more sustainable future, focused on supporting more than 500 million people to have access to clean energy sources.[4]

Also, the Paris Agreement seeks to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and offers financing to developing countries, all with the aim of having programs that help mitigate climate change.[5] Agreements like this have forged a commitment that helps to make the energy generation process cleaner and more sustainable.

In Latin America, in addition to ensuring economic development, work has been done on biodiversity conservation and adaptation measures to mitigate the negative effects of climate change. The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) has said that several countries in the region have great potential to develop a green hydrogen industry, and these opportunities should be seized.[6]

Thus, governments and companies around the world have chosen to invest in these energy innovations that seek to leave aside the fossil fuel industry. Beyond efficiency and cost reduction, this entails benefits to workers and entire communities their stakeholders.

By 2030, Enel Group has committed to tripling its renewable capacity, mobilizing investments of more than 200 billion (US$203 billion), focusing on enabling the electrification of its customers’ electricity demand by reducing energy costs by up to 40 percent and achieving an 80 percent reduction in its carbon footprint.[7]

In Mexico, the commitment for 2024 is that 35 percent of the electricity generation will be clean. Thanks to its wide array of natural resources, this can be easily achieved with any type of renewable technology. This is the reason why I like to call the country “the crown jewel” of renewables. However, it is necessary for the whole sector to work together to take advantage of its opportunities and achieve the goal set for the next decade.

In our case, we have adapted to the changes in the Mexican market. Enel Energía Mexico was born in 2017 as our energy trading vehicle in the Wholesale Electricity Market (MEM). With it, we seek to meet the industrial and commercial demand of customers by granting Clean Energy Certificates (CEL in Spanish) to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and thus prove that energy consumers are using renewable sources.

With our participation in the MEM, we represent our clients, manage their electricity, and advise them on regulatory compliance. This positions us as their strategic allies so that they continue to operate properly and contribute to starting their path toward sustainability, reducing the impact of CO2 emissions in their operations and moving toward a greener future.

Below, I list some of the actions we are taking in Enel Group to achieve a clean energy transition.

  1. Generate clean energy to evolve

During the generation of clean energy, we make sure that our production chains are sustainable. Beyond the technical issues and the investment that come with building a renewable power plant, we have initiatives that seek to work hand in hand with the communities to engage them in understanding why it is being built, which are its benefits, and the contribution to the country. This way, we know that the evolution of society lies not only in the consumption of clean energies that benefit the planet but also in doing so with sustainability as the axis of any of our processes.

  1. Rethinking production models, the basis of the circular economy

Our main stakeholder, our planet, reminds us that we can no longer produce and process in a linear fashion as we used to. Each industry is turning to a model that is fruitful to the Earth. The energy sector understands that through innovation and environmental sustainability, we can build a profitable economy for all.

In this regard, the concept of circular economy is becoming more relevant within the private sector agenda. At Enel Group, we have joined our commitment to this new paradigm with the Futur-e project for the reconversion of dismantled plants. In Mexico, we are implementing state-of-the-art technology to extend our plants’ lifetime. Moreover, as soon as the time is right, we will reuse their materials to give them a second life.

We also work under the model of a “sustainable construction site” at all our new plants, where we create a strong social fabric that will help accelerate the energy transition. We are aware that sustainability will not happen on its own. That is why at Enel Group we encourage innovation to generate, along with society, the green future we all want to achieve.

  1. Technology resources can accelerate the energy transition

Energy allows people to build their life; therefore, we label it as the “engine of development” of society. Due to this, we seek to electrify all sectors with renewable sources. In this way, each person can become an essential part of the fight against climate change by choosing, for example, electric transportation. Enel Mexico will continue to support electrification in every sector, for we are aware of its capacity for decarbonization and its viability in terms of costs.

 

[1] DiChristopher, T. (2019, 14 febrero). Climate disasters cost the world $650 billion over 3 years — Americans are bearing the brunt: Morgan Stanley. CNBC. Recuperado 12 de julio de 2022, de https://www.cnbc.com/2019/02/14/climate-disasters-cost-650-billion-over-3-years-morgan-stanley.html

[2] UNEP Copenhagen Climate Centre. (2021, 6 octubre). The Adaptation Finance Gap Report –. UNEP CCC. Recuperado 12 de julio de 2022, de https://unepdtu.org/publications/the-adaptation-finance-gap-report/

[3] Renewables 2021 – Analysis. (s. f.). IEA. Recuperado 12 de julio de 2022, de https://www.iea.org/reports/renewables-2021

[4] Plan estratégico 2022–2025. (s. f.). PNUD. Recuperado 8 de julio de 2022, de https://strategicplan.undp.org/es/

[5] United Nations. (2015). El Acuerdo de París | Naciones Unidas. Recuperado 8 de julio de 2022, de https://www.un.org/es/climatechange/paris-agreement

[6] América Latina y el Caribe tiene todas las condiciones para convertirse en un hub de energía renovable con gran potencial en hidrógeno verde | Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe. (2021, 22 junio). CEPAL. Recuperado 12 de julio de 2022, de https://www.cepal.org/es/noticias/america-latina-caribe-tiene-todas-condiciones-convertirse-un-hub-energia-renovable-gran

[7] Enel, the road to 2030 in the 2022–2024 Strategic Plan: powering investments towards zero emissions with focus on the electrification of customer energy demand. (2021, 24 noviembre). Enel Group. Recuperado 11 de julio de 2022, de https://www.enel.com/media/explore/search-press-releases/press/2021/11/enel-the-road-to-2030-in-the-20222024-strategic-plan-powering-investments-towards-zero-emissions-with-focus-on-the-electrification-of-customer-energy-demand

Photo by:   Bruno Riga