Why Is Mexico’s President So Hostile To Solar Energy Investment?


What has caused the Mexican President to be so resistant to investing in solar energy?

#Mexicos #President #Hostile #Solar #Energy #Investment


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Follow the money


Because he and his cronies don’t stand to profit, and it cuts into pemex profits. Figure out a way to give him a cut and he will embrace it.


Mexico is one of the best potential locations for solar energy generation in the world. It has great sun with minimal seasonal variability. On paper at least, Mexico is well-positioned to produce competitively priced solar-generated electricity. Over the last decade, Mexico has successfully attracted billions of dollars in new investment in solar energy. But, investment in solar energy has stalled during the administration of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, a controversial populist who frequently ridicules policy experts and often embraces nationalistic tropes.

Over the last decade Mexican policymakers worked to draft legislation and create opportunities for private sector investment in renewable energy. During 2017 and 2018 Mexico received over $10 billion dollars in renewable energy investment. Within the last few years, the total share of wind and solar energy in Mexico quadrupled from 3% in 2017 to over 12% in 2022. To put this in perspective, however, the share of renewable energy in Mexico is still around half of the share of renewables in U.S. In terms of solar output, Mexico is in second place in Latin America behind Brazil, but it lags behind smaller countries such as Italy, Japan, and the Netherlands in terms of total solar energy production.

Unfortunately, under Lopez Obrador, Mexico has stopped issuing permits and canceled auctions for solar projects, effectively cutting off the flow of private sector investment in solar projects. As president, Lopez Obrador has promoted fossil fuels and mostly ignored renewables. Overall, it seems like Lopez Obrador is not very interested in developing solar energy. His government is now promoting the Puerto Peñasco project, but the actual allocation of funding seems pretty paltry. Lopez Obrador’s government is spending around $400 million during the first phase of the project. To put that in perspective— that’s around 2% of budget of the flagship oil refinery Lopez Obrador is building in his home state of Tabasco.

Lopez Obrador has given the green light to burning coal and fuel oil to generate electricity and has publicly mocked wind turbines. Mexico needs a lot of investment in renewables if it wants to achieve its using clean energy to produce 38.5% of its electricity by 2030. During the Lopez Obrador administration, foreign companies have largely skipped over investment opportunities in Mexico.

During a recent podcast discussion, Diego Rivera Rivota, a Research Associate at the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University, explained “Given the stagnant result of renewable energy development I’m afraid I can only give an F to this government’s energy policy in terms of renewable development. Not only has it failed to promote and increase investment in renewable energy, but the policies implemented by this government have actively undermined the development of these projects.”
In 2017, Mexico received a whopping 35% of all renewable energy investment in Latin America. Today, that figure is just 7%.

“Mexico is going in the opposite direction that the world is going in. This is a missed opportunity. Mexico has absolutely outstanding wind and solar resources,” Rivera Rivota added.

He highlights Sonora, Nuevo Leon, Puebla, and Durango as states that are taking action locally to attract investment in solar projects, but says that during the Lopez Obrador, most renewable energy investors have chosen to skip over Mexico in favor of Brazil, Colombia, and Chile.

Asked to pick three words to summarize Lopez Obrador’s stance towards the private sector, Rivera Rivota picked “nationalistic, hostile and backwards.”

In 2023, Lopez Obrador has tried to modify his messaging and promote Mexico as a destination for electric vehicle production. But, Rivera Rivota says that overall, the most meaningful obstacles to renewable energy investment in Mexico will only be removed after Lopez Obrador leaves office in 2024.

“The common view in the private sector currently is a sense of uncertainty. The big question is who the next president will be. The optimistic group believes they can weather the storm and hope for a set of less hostile policies [with] the new president,” Rivera Rivota explained.


As a Mexican I can tell you why: The president’s party is lobbied to hell by both private and public businesses. It is well known that the current CFE (the state owned and only electricity provider) director, Manuel Bartlett, sponsored not only Andres’s president campaign when he won, but also his other 2 unsuccesful campaigns as a presidential candidate. It is also known that Bartlett has personal ties with many coal oligarchs whose companies were chosen to be the providers of the coal required by CFE’s power plants.

It also so happens that AMLO had signed a law that require CFE to not only generate electricity by burning heavy petroleum oil (combustóleo in spanish) the worst, most polluting form of generating power. But also that law required CFE to buy said heavy petroleum oil to Pemex, the other state owned giant, and the largest known source of funneling public money by placing friends and family as directors.

As someone said in this thread: Follow the money


Before reading: I predict that it’s because he’s being paid to by fossil fuel concerns…

After reading: Yup. That’s what it sounds like. Too bad; Mexico would do well with solar.


Because there are better solutions and it destroys an ungodly amount of land. Resources required, and probably disposal.

There are better solutions.


why did the US build 2 big natural gas lines into mexico?


As an Australian our former Prime minister Scott Morrison, is evangelical known for defending the coal industry in his country. He even brought a chunk of coal into parliament question time. Follow the money


Possibly not that bright…..


Because he ripped of Pelosi in oil stocks and their president is playing ball with oil money now. You see it is the same strategy that American fossil fuel industry used here.

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