by hromero ⌂ @, Tuesday, January 11, 2022, 16:34 (7 days ago) @ ZihuaRob

I would note that the document Rob linked to is not the actual proposed law buy an attempt to summarize the proposals. As I read through it, I am struck that it was probably a document composed largely by supporters of the law and lacking in specifics or analysis of potential side effects. I am providing a link to the actual document proposed by the president and his party and I will highlight key parts that are relevant to my concern that plants like that at Petacalco will be prioritized over new clean energy. I will note that my link is also a party document and that there is a lot of salesmanship built into the document, but at least it is specific about some of the proposed reforms.

Link to proposed changes

1.You will notice in this document that solar and wind energy are in third place for electricity generation behind hydroelectric and other existing CFE plants, of which thermoelectric plants are included (in position 2). Only after those first 2 options are considered can solar and electric be considered.

2.The last paragraph of page 7 details that the reform also seeks to change the way in which clean energy certificates (CEL’s) are granted. Rather than being based on a specific location the certificates will be granted to organizations that produce a sufficient percentage of their electricity with the approved clean energy sources. So instead of only giving clean energy certificates to solar panel sites, for example, they can be given to companies whose energy is in part generated by solar panels but may be majority produced by fossil fuels.

3.In the document linked by Rob, on page 13, we can see that this government sees natural gas as a clean energy source even though it is far dirtier than solar, wind and other renewable energy sources.

4.There is absolutely no mention of investing in CFE so that it can transition to renewable energies but instead puts much focus on using the current power plants in CFE’s inventory that are all thermoelectric. Many of those plants have been shut down or scaled back because the introduction of cheaper renewable energies have been able to outcompete them on price. This document makes it very clear that it wants to prioritize those thermoelectric plants over the renewable ones simply because they are privately owned.

The bottom line is that this president is nostalgic for a time when government monopolies like Pemex and CFE controlled vast swaths of the Mexican economy and those in power were able to use them for their personal gain and also some handouts to the Mexican people to buy their votes at election time. Mexico’s electricity costs used to be substantially higher than the rest of the major economies in large part because of the monopoly of CFE. It is only in the last 7-8 years that it has begun to change because of the introduction of competition and because renewable energies are now less expensive than fossil fuels. Mr. Obrador believes that returning to that monopoly will somehow make Mexican lives better but it seems to me that he totally disregards the health implications that burning those fossil fuels burdens the Mexican people with. Not to mention the implications of a warming planet and the costs that it will impose on us all.

Humberto Romero

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