Mexico is systematically shifting its energy investments to renewable resources and green energy initiatives; a strategy that has already attracted a record amount of foreign direct investment (FDI) in this important economic sector. In fact,Mexico remains one of the largest FDI recipients in recent years, attracting support from commercial lenders, multilateral financing institutions and international development banks for its many new infrastructure projects that promote environmental objectives.
“Some international development banks have even prioritized the Mexican market as a target lending environment in order to spur the development of clean energy projects,” writes Market Research Reports. “The National Energy Strategy 2012-2026 aims to increase the share of clean energy sources by supplying 35 percent of overall power to the grid by 2026.”
As Mexico emerges as a global leader in the new energy market, there are already telltale changes in the worldwide energy sector, including the reduction of costs, the creation of new jobs, improved air quality and reduced climate damage, according to international science and environment correspondent Stephen Levy, who also points out that emerging markets are finding renewable energy to be much more cost effective than fossil fuels.
As a result, manufacturers are poised to benefit from the shift to green energy programs, which are expected to help boost production and lower costs, while the UN has praised Mexico’s move towards employing low-carbon technology both today and in the immediate future.
“The UN report on regional surges in green energy investment pointed to spending growing steadily in Mexico as investments continue to pour in from the U.S. and other foreign countries that understand the importance of emerging economies when it comes to cost-competitiveness for wind and solar power manufacturing,” writes North American Product Sharing, a U.S.-based multi-industry manufacturing group. “A U.S. Department of Energy report notes how investments in environmentally friendly energy sources are shifting to developing nations such as Mexico, with its energy grid construction that is also providing huge investment openings for U.S. and other foreign companies.”
Recently, a number of water, wind,solar and geothermal projects have been announced, along with a plan to reduce carbon emissions and protect Mexico’s considerable natural resources. For example, the city of Monterrey – which is “one of the most important industrial capitals of Mexico and Latin America” according to the Huffington Post – recently launched the Monterrey Metropolitan Water Fund (FAMM),a program that will help companies save money while providing funding for conservation efforts.
In addition the Global Post reports that the Macquarie Mexican Infrastructure Fund (MMIF) will invest upwards of $37 million in a hydroelectric power plant that is being developed in the western state of Nayarit by Spain’s Acciona – a global leader in sustainable development. The 28.8 MW plant will be built within an existing dam and will regulate water discharge from the existing infrastructure. Electricity generated by the project will be sold via a self-supply agreement with a local Mexican power company for the next 15 years and the project will be completed by late 2015.
Also of note, Mexico’s financial exchange – Bolsa Mexicana de Valores (BMV) – has unveiled the first carbon offset credit exchange system in all of Latin America. Slated for launch in late Nov. 2013. As part of the National Energy Strategy adopted in 2012, the carbon credits exchange will provide financial incentives for public and private sector organizations to go green by reducing carbon and greenhouse gas emissions, promoting forest preservation, supporting sustainable agriculture and spurring additional socially and environmentally responsible investments.
Another large contract was signed this week between Alstom – a global leader in sustainable power initiatives – and the Mexican Federal Electricity Commission. The two entities will build a $40 million geothermal power plant that will contribute to the diversification of non-fossil energy sources in the country, which must equal at least 35 percent of the whole by 2024. Mexico has the world’s fourth largest geothermal power reserves, behind the U.S.,the Philippines and Indonesia.
Finally, near Mexico’s eastern coast, deep in the jungles of the famed Yucatan Peninsula not far from the Riviera Maya and Caribbean Sea,MIT researchers are wrapping up development of an inexpensive new system that will purify water using solar power. In time, the system will be easily scaled to accommodate the size of virtually any community and could be used to provide affordable clean drinking water for people worldwide.
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