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Mexico City will become a Solar City

The mayor of Mexico City, Claudia Sheinbaum, announced last May 25 the “Energy Sustainability Strategy from 2019 to 2024” also called the “Solar City.” It consists of several components to foster the implementation of solar technologies in different market segments, as well as other renewable energy technologies, and reduce CO2 carbon emissions.

The program includes ambitious targets for solar thermal and solar PV. For solar thermal applications, it foresees the installation of solar water heating systems in the residential and commercial market, as well as in small businesses. The overall goal is to install 787,000 m2  of collector area by the end of 2024, which corresponds to approximately 721,424 tons CO2 avoided.

In the residential market, the target is to install solar water heating systems in 22,435 homes annually, which makes a total of 134,611 by the end of 2024. Additionally, the program promotes the new local environment standard NADF-008-AMBT-2017 that regulates the installation of solar water heating systems in Mexico City.

Another target is the installation of solar water heating systems in 240 nixtamal mills in 2019 with a total budget of MXN 80 million. The Solar City program offers a direct subsidy of up to 30% and soft loans. For the implementation of this measure, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) advises the local government of Mexico City. In 2020 it is expected to extend this action to 400 business annually including restaurants, washing centers, hotels, and other SMEs.

Another essential component of the Solar City program is training and certification of installers of solar technologies. Its target is to train and certify 1000 technicians as solar installers in 2019, for both solar water heating and PV systems. This certification is based on the existing schemes defined by the labor competency standards of CONOCER. Besides, the creation of new solar businesses with qualified human resources is promoted.

To implement this program, the local government has several alliances with international institutions such as the Interamerican Development Bank (IDB), the UNDP, the World Bank. Among the local partners, there are public universities (UNAM, IPN, UACM), the Electricity Federal Commission (CFE), the Ministry of Energy (SENER), solar associations such as ANES and ASOLMEX, who are also partners of Intersolar Mexico.

 

Article by Marisol Oropeza