The lower house of the Mexican government has approved amendments to the country’s renewable energy bill aimed at promoting rooftop PV at public schools.
Installations at schools in rural communities will also have the opportunity to sell surplus energy to the rest of the municipality.
Commenting on the bill, Deputy Ricardo Astudillo Suarez from the Green Ecologist Party said that renewable energy will combat climate change and reduce dependence on fossil fuels. Energy independence is particularly important for public schools in rural communities, Astudillo said.
He added that this ruling demonstrates the government’s commitment to extending the renewable energy programmes currently in place.
Labour Party Deputy José Alberto Benavides Castañeda said reducing fossil fuels through renewable energy sources will cut economic and environmental costs.
Last year, Mexico was the second country in the world to implement long-term climate change targets into national legislation.
The renewable energy bill calls for a 30% reduction in emission growth by 2020, and 50% by 2050 with 35% of energy to come from renewable sources by 2024.
Solar installations in the country are expected to double to 60MW this year. In an interview with Bloomberg, Alvaro Lenz-Herrera, president of the Asociacion Nacional de Energia Solar said the state-owned utility, Comision Federal de Electricidad (CFE), has been planning a bidding process for 30MW in large- scale solar parks in Baja California since 2012.
Currently, the country offers tax incentives for solar projects and a form of net metering as well as the possibility of long-term power purchase deals agreements with the CFE.
The reform has been submitted to the Mexican Senate for approval. Details on how rooftop PV will be implemented into the reform were not disclosed.