Mexico’s PV capacity reached 389 MW at the end of 2016

Mexico hit an installed PV capacity of around 389 MW as of the end of December 2016, according to the report “Reporte de Avance de Energías Limpias” published by the country’s energy depertment Secretariat of Energy (Sener).

According to these figures, new grid-connected PV systems installed in Mexico in 2016 have totaled 219 MW. This result represents a 128% year-on-year growth, and the largest growth ever registered for the Mexican solar sector.

Currently, renewable energies represent around 25.1% of the country’s electricity mix, although PV has reached a share of only 0.53%. Also in terms of power production PV has a minimal share with a percentage of just 0.04%. Last year, however, all renewables combined together were able to reach a share of 20% of demand.

In a recent interview with pv magazine, Santiago Barcón of Energía Hoy revealed that Mexico had around 220 MW of PV distributed generation connected to its grid at the end of 2016. Furthermore, several hundred MW are expected to be installed this year, as a result of the first two auctions, which were held by the Mexican government last year and selected PV projects with a combined capacity of 3.6 GW.

According to Héctor Olea, president of the Mexican solar association Asolmex, more than one third of the 28 solar projects that were selected in the two power auctions held by the Mexican government last year are now at an advanced stage of development or under construction. Olea named the 754 MW project of Italian power utility Enel in the state of Coahuila, whose construction began in late March, a 270 MW solar park in the state of Sonora, a 157 MW installation in Chihuahua, and an 80 MW plant in Aguascalientes.