Sustainability of Mexico Electricity

Categories: Solar Energy

The annual primary energy consumption for CDMX is 385.2 PJ. The main sources are fossil fuels, specially gasoline around 8 million m3. Renewable sources represent less than 10%. The transport sector needs the most energy supply about 61%. it also is correlated for being the main source for microparticles PM10 and PM2.5, nitrogen oxides (NOx) and carbon dioxide emissions (CO2).Industrial sector consumes the most of the natural gas and electricity while housing consumes mainly LP gas. In the metropolitan area the total annual emission of equivalent carbon dioxide is almost 63 million tons.

Industrial sector, chemical factories and electricity generation contribute the most for NOx and Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which are precursors for the formation of ozone (O3) because chemical oxidation with solar irradiation. It is toxic in the troposphere if there are low ventilation of air, something common due to the orography of the city. Therefore, reducing these pollutants is considered a priority to reduce the population's exposure to pollution and improve air quality.

Housing and commerce buildings are also producers for VOCs and they are not regulated. 95% of the Equivalent carbon dioxide (CO2e) emissions comes from fossil fuels direct combustion. The CO2e emissions is 2,87 tCO2/capita.
The consumption of electricity in the city is 2,622 KWh per capita while in the rest of the country the average is 2,228 kWh per capita. Over 99.7% of population has access to electricity. The total national electricity generation is 317,278 GWh (CFE, 2018). It has a growing rate of 2.7% annually. The Metropolitan Area of Mexico City produced 8,200 GWh the last year.

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It represents around the 2.5 % of the total production but it consumes 20% of the electricity. The deficit of self-supply represents a challenge to create enough infrastructure for the Transmission and Distribution grids coming from neighbor and southern States of the country.
Most of Mexico's electricity generation comes from conventional thermal plants (76 %). The country has two nuclear operational units which accounted for 6% of total electricity production. Just renewable sources supplied 16 %. Solar photovoltaic technologies generated 1% of the total annual production. (2018)
Mexico is a non-Annex I Party to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), ratified the Kyoto Protocol in 2000 and the Paris Agreement in 2016. (IAEA, 2019). The clean energy goals are to reducing its green house gas emissions up to 30% with respect to the business-as-usual scenario by 2020. The specific objective for the power sector is to generate at least 35% of electricity from clean energy sources by 2024, and 50% by 2050. (SENER, 2019). At 2018, the clean production was 23.2 %, it failed its short-term goal to achieve 25%.
Clean energy, in the Mexican law, is defined as the one coming from Wind, Solar irradiation, Marine, Geothermal, Bioenergetics, Biodigester, Hydrogen cells, Hydroelectric, Nuclear, Cogeneration, Carbon capture, and other low GHG’s emission technologies.
The state-owned Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) is the dominant player in the generation sector, controlling over three-fourths of installed generating capacity. CFE also currently holds a monopoly on electricity transmission and distribution. The Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) has principal regulatory oversight of the electricity sector. In December 2013, the Mexican Congress passed an energy reform that will allow the private sector to participate in the electricity generation. Since the 2018, the new elected government for a left-party coalition changed the perspective for energy not only to meet electricity demand, but also to maximize power generation, transmission, and distribution practices to contribute to sustainable economic growth.
Increase renewable energy generation capacity with suitable technologies
Promote the renewable technologies to generate electricity like for example, take advantage of the high solar irradiation potential and making incentives to housing and commercial building to install PV solar in their rooftops and solar collectors to heat water instead of LP gas. Supply the energy demand with renewable sources
Create smart grids adding monitoring and renewable technologies. Improve the quality of transmission and distribution grids with smart devices to monitor them.

Improve electrical grids

Look for low carbon technologies From electricity generation to home appliances, evaluate the efficiency and switch to low carbon emissions Decarbonization
Build Power-To-X systems to manage energy flows in storage facilities. Reduce the energy deficit from neighbor states by providing its own energy with Power-To-X technologies where the remaining electricity can be storage or convert into other types of energy. Develop storage energy facilities
Look for alternatives to fuels avoiding fossil ones. Reduce the fossil fuels consumption linking efforts with mobility sector to promote electric vehicles and some biofuels. Reduce dependency of fossil fuels
Take advantage of municipal solid waste disposal and convert them into usable energy. Recover thermal energy content from waste by pyrolysis, gasification or combustion technologies to produce other sources of energy and avoid landfills Waste-to-Energy link
Cut carbon dioxide emissions Regulate industries and verify transports which polluted the most by investing in better alternatives. Also it should fee the ones which exceeds the limits.

Zero emissions

SENER. (2019). PRODESEN 2019-2033. Programa de Desarrollo del Sector Eléctrico Nacional. Secretaria de Energía. Mexico. (2019). Country Nuclear Power Profiles, Mexico. International Atomic Energy Agency. energy sector strongly depends from fossil fuels because Mexico has big reserves of petroleum, natural gas and coal. The previous public policies were focused on develop the oil industry to export crude and build the pipelines needed to distribute. For many years the revenues for high crude oil prices helped to develop the country till the current years when the production slowed down coupled with corruption inside the administrative Secretaries. Those external and internal factors started a recession in the energy sector.
The main challenge is help in the diversification of energy supplies to reduce the dependency on conventional fossil fuels. The current infrastructure needs to modernize it and invest in renewable energies to reduce imports from natural gas and gasolines and at the same time to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
Mexico City in situated in the center of the country where the north meets the south and links the Pacific-Atlantic route. Its strategic position makes the city the main economic hub and where the important decisions about energy take place.
The next proposals are linked with other sectors like mobility, waste, urban planning because it need a commitment from governmental policies to be congruent with the sustainability goals. The investments must be considered, and social participation need to be respected. Also among the proposals should be a mutual coordination.
Power-to-X is a multifunctional of technologies with the objective to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by decarbonize the energy generation sources shifting to clean and renewable ones. It is based in converting the excess electricity into chemical energy sources to be easily storage and could supply fuels, fertilizers, heat or electricity again.
Electricity can not be stored for long time neither in huge quantities due to its electromagnetic proprieties. The challenge in most part of the world is to generate it at the same time is demanded. It is a challenge to read quickly to big changes in the consumers’ demand. Power-to-X started with the principle of converting the exceed power generation into hydrogen or other chemical energy which can be store and transport easily and be connected to the grid when it is required.
The first step is a power generation from clean and renewable technologies. Mexico City has a solar irradiation of 5.3 KWh/m2. It means a high potential because it is located inside the Tropics and has clear sky most of the year. Only 1% of electricity comes from solar photovoltaic cells, those are mainly installed for housing supply. A convenient request will be increasing the solar PV installations for residential and industrial purposes. In the governmental program of CDMX there is already an agenda to incentive panels and solar water-heating collectors. Another key proposal is linked with waste sector to use the municipal solid waste for anaerobic decomposition to produce synthesis gas and it can be converted into electricity or fuels. It will significantly help to reduce GHGs emission from landfills and create new jobs. Renewable energy sources are intermittent for electricity generation and that unbalance the stability of the grid. To overcome with this challenge, the intermediate step must be storing the exceed electricity.
Hydrogen can be produced by electrolysis using the exceed electricity from the grid. There are many possibilities where H2 can be used, for example, convert it into methanol (CH₃OH) by synthesis in the petrochemical industry to later produce fuels to mobility or directly in fuel cells. The current infrastructure can be used to transport the fuels. In the chemical industry it can be transform into ammonia (NH₃) to create fertilizers for agriculture. Or for combustion to supply heat to other industries or converted again into electricity during peak demand.
Power-to-X can help to reduce the energy deficit of the valley because the nodes for transmission of electricity experience ‘bottle necks’ effects and that means higher losses. Another social problematic is the combustible theft directly from the pipelines. It can be extremely dangerous and lead to criminal activities. Empowering the local communities can have a positive effect to energy sector. Federal policies are implemented to make more efficient the energy distribution.
Socioeconomic inequality is most evident in the east and north of the ZMVM, which have the highest number of people in poverty. In contrast, the central city has a higher number of services and jobs and higher human development index.
The urban development planning policies are mostly corrective and applied for different governmental Secretaries in consequence of the administrative boundaries in which states is based. A comprehensive and planned agenda for a public management of the metropolitan area is still not achieved due to fragmented organization with limited and insufficient coordination, which causes poor regional planning and does not favor the consolidation of a balanced megalopolitan system, a situation that visibly impacts not only the city, but also the functioning of the entire economic nation.
The government for Mexico City has its own program to environment and climate change 2019-2024 with 7 axis to adhere: green areas, rivers and lakes, tap water management, zero waste, integrated mobility, air quality and solar energy. It is an achievement for present a transcendental scheme for public plan. The neighbor state EDOMEX has its own urban development agenda structures in pillars: social, economic, land and security adding transversal gender equity, competent government and connectivity and technologies. It is positive to consider social aspect for urban planning. The inquiry here is to notice that each government has its own policies and it is liked to political issues. CDMX is ruled by the left-wing political party MORENA, while center-right PRI party rules in EDOMEX. It is the most populated city of Mexico which represent the most voters for elections. That is one reason because it can not be a homogenization in public policies because political interests are involved. While daily millions of people cross the limits between CDMX and EDOMEX to go to work, home, recreation or transit making use of both urban services. CDMX maintains a dynamic relationship with its metropolitan region in terms of the movement of the population and transportation system. For example, 40 percent of metropolitan area inhabitants have to cross at least one municipal border to get to their workplace.(OCDE, 2015]. In addition, the large number of administrative stakeholders makes the design and implementation of public policies and regional planning difficult. As a result, the governance structure in the region is fragmented. A strategy in resilience must be implemented at multiple levels, from local to regional and federal.
The environmental agenda for the metropolitan area exist since 1992 to unify those public policies difference into the same goal for sustainability for the valley, specially to reduce air pollutants which affects everyone. Federal government is partially is involved. The results are still not complete due to the complexity and administrative changes. The suggestion is to make this agenda more critical in base of indicators with a standard methodology to measure precisely items important to sustainability.
Urban resilience is needed to promote an equitable, safe, and connected city through the design of programs, projects, and urban policies. Housing and employment are not balanced resulted in urban sprawl, which has led to urban expansion into peripheral areas of the ZMVM. This growth pattern creates major challenges for mobility, as much of the population must travel long distances to access employment opportunities and other services. Urban growth occurs in Conservation Areas, which puts pressure on the environmental services and irregular settlements. Increasing socio-spatial equality should be the priority for a new landscape planning within the urban area instead of increasing land consumption. Investments in public space design can address multiple issues, including unequal access, economic development, and environmental pressures, and promote other benefits such as security and social cohesion. One essential activity is the linking of information from the Atlas of Risks and Hazards with different planning instruments to inform decision making at the regional level.
that use a comprehensive approacAir monitoring program called PROAIRE is performed with the purpose to advice how the air pollutants levels are. To improve quality is needed to reduce pollutants for the sources mainly because transport and industries. Industries are immovable sources easier to regulate than movable vehicles difficult to track. There is needed a linked plan with mobility and energy to shift to electric vehicles and better public transport to reduce private cars and heavy truck. The existing program called “Today do not drive” has partially success to restrict driving car one day per week promoting car pooling among citizens.

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Sustainability of Mexico Electricity. (2021, Oct 31). Retrieved from

Sustainability of Mexico Electricity
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