Latin America's largest solar power plant,
a facility with 39 MW of generating capacity,
has gone online in the northwestern Mexican state
of Baja California Sur.
The Aura Solar I photovoltaic power plant
was inaugurated by Mexican President Enrique
Peña Nieto on Wednesday and will supply
electricity to the city of La Paz.
The energy industry reforms implemented last
December will help lead to "more energy
generation, cleaner energy and, above all,
cheaper energy to help make Mexico a more competitive
country," Peña Nieto said.
The goal is to turn Mexico into "a country
that attracts greater investment for the development
and creation of jobs," the president said.
Some 25 percent of Mexico's electricity is
currently generated using clean energy sources,
Peña Nieto said during the ceremony
in the Las Olas Altas section of La Paz.
The Climate Change Law requires that this
number go up to 35 percent by 2024, the president
said, adding that he was confident that the
goal would be met.
The Aura Solar I power plant, which is owned
by Corporacion Aura Solar and quadrupled Mexico's
installed photovoltaic capacity, will be "a
model of success that will be duplicated in
other parts of the country," Peña
"This photovoltaic power plant is not
just the first large-scale one of its type
in Mexico, but also the biggest in all of Latin
America," Corporacion Aura Solar chairman
Daniel Servitje Montull said.
The $100 million energy project was developed
on a 100-hectare (247-acre) site in La Paz
by Mexico's Gauss Energia and Martifer Solar,
an international engineering company that has
experience in building solar power facilities.
Aura Solar I, which has an estimated operational
life of 30 years, has about 132,000 solar panels
and is expected to prevent the emission of
60,000 tons of greenhouse gases annually.
The emission of greenhouse gases is believed
to contribute to global warming.
The Aura Solar I power plant will supply electricity
to about 164,000 people, or about 64 percent
of La Paz's residents. EFE