Solar Energy Leads Renewable Power Growth in Mexico
Energy Ministry SENER reported that renewable energy production had its highest growth between 2020 and 2021, reaching a growth of 36%. Renewable energy provides 14.73% of the country’s energy, ranking as the third national primary energy production source. Solar energy leads this expansion with a 196% increase.
Despite changes in energy regulation, Mexico has made important steps toward its energy transition by allowing companies to invest in photovoltaic solar systems and generate their own energy to use within their facilities if these systems do not exceed the 0.5MW threshold. Such smaller systems are increasingly permeating the Mexican energy mix, especially now that larger-scale projects are put on hold due to uncertainty in the sector.
Implementing a solar energy project benefits companies economically via savings in energy consumption costs, environmentally by reducing the carbon footprint and in terms of process innovation, since the adoption of new technologies contributes to energy independence.
The Mexican energy market is a global reference point. Solar has become an important technological benchmark in the country. The Mexican government has expressed its commitment to making 35% of its power production come from renewable energy sources by 2024.
So far, the government has bet on the success of the Sonora Plan, which includes the development of Puerto Peñasco’s solar park, poised to become the largest solar park in Latin America and the seventh biggest in the world. The first stage has a projected annual electricity production of 1041.74GWh and is expected to begin commercial activity in May 2023.
Moreover, in light of regulation changes, the US and Canada asked to settle discussions over complaints regarding unfairness in the market. The Mexican government has followed through with the dialogue, as the USMCA partners met recently to further advance the discussions regarding energy practices in Mexico. Raquel Buenrostro, Mexico’s Minister of Economy, announced that the government is preparing a policy package to address the issues contained in the dispute.
Furthermore, Buenrostro stated the government will invest in transmission infrastructure to support the interconnection of renewable energy projects. The ministry further defended delays in permits for solar and wind projects citing problems regarding intermittency with the transmission and distribution system. Therefore, more investment will be made as a solution.
Leaders and key players in the solar sector will meet at Mexico Solar Summit 2023 to further discuss these and more topics.