MEXICO CITY – Total installed wind power capacity in Mexico will reach some 12,000 megawatts by 2020, equivalent to 15 percent of the country’s electricity mix, an industry expert said.
During the inauguration of the WindPower forum in this capital, the president of the Mexican Wind Energy Association, Leopoldo Rodriguez, said it is necessary to set a target for wind energy’s share of the country’s total power generation to achieve that goal.
This alternative energy sector will create some 45,000 jobs in the areas of components and supply of specialized services, Rodriguez said Tuesday.
He also told Energy Secretary Jordy Herrera that a study of Mexico’s wind energy sector indicates “it’s feasible to set a goal of a 15 percent share of (the total electricity mix) by around 2020.”
According to Rodriguez, it is important to spur output by small wind producers and plan the expansion of the electric grid to make room for contributions from wind energy and other renewable sources.
The study shows that Mexico has sites with conditions for installing at least 12,000 MW of generating capacity by 2020 with just a few adjustments to the current regulatory framework, he said, noting that just 1,000 MW of that proposed total have been installed to date.
“Should that goal be achieved, the wind energy industry could become one of the 10 main recipients of investment (inflows) in Mexico,” Rodriguez said.
He added that that would add 167 billion pesos ($13 billion) to Mexico’s gross domestic product, as well as mitigate the environmental impact of energy output by reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 23 million tons.
“We think the national goal of a 35 percent contribution of clean energies to the country’s total output could be (achieved by) 2020 with the participation of wind energy,” Rodriguez said.
For his part, Herrera said two of the basic goals of the National Energy Strategy, to be unveiled in late February, are to diversify the energy matrix and increase renewable energy’s contribution to meeting electricity demand, which is growing at a rate of 5 percent annually.
The WindPower Mexico forum has drawn national and international experts from the public and private sectors who have developed successful technologies and solutions for developing wind energy resources.
Rodriguez had previously told Efe that Mexico has become one of the focal points for the development of the wind energy industry and is among the fastest growing countries in this sector worldwide.
Considering the industry’s “dizzying” development in recent years, it now is necessary to define long-term goals to consolidate those gains and that is the goal of the WindPower Mexico conference, he said.
“It’s a high-level event in which we’re going to have leading authorities discussing and working toward these long-term definitions for the sector,” Rodriguez said. EFE