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Blending climate change adaptation and mitigation through renewable energies in rural XALAPA, Veracruz- Mexico




Mexico is among the first fifteen major greenhouse gas (GHG) emitters of the world, it generates almost 2% of global share, which come mostly from the energy sector. In this regard, the country has undertaken the non-legally binding objective before the UNFCCC to halve its emissions by 2050 in relation to those of the year 2000..

Some of the challenges to scale up renewables in the country pertain to the state of the technology’s learning curve and its correspondent investment risks, and some others have to do with the strong dependence on oil of the Mexican economy. Even if one type of such challenges can be overcome through policy, renewables would always be in disadvantage vis-à-vis oil or shale gas, unless both types of challenges can be tackled: what if minimum-risk technologies can deliver direct and substantial social benefits at the same time that they avoid GHG emissions?

The idea finds echo in two relevant facts. First, it has been widely exposed that energy subsidies for electricity consumption in the agricultural and residential sectors has been a costly policy that stimulates energy use affecting the poorest (OECD, 2013). Second, most of the Mexican territory suitable for wind and solar parks are property of communities known as ejidos, in fact, almost 70% of the country is covered by ejidos, whose communities live under the poverty line. Hence, any policy aimed at scaling up renewables would be by no means successful unless it does not integrate the environmental costs into the price system through direct social transfers instead of harmful subsidies and embrace the social component.

Category of the action

Reducing emissions from electric power sector.

What actions do you propose?


-       To establish Renewable Energy Units (REUs) as directive boards of wind and solar parks with representatives of federal, state and municipal governments, civil society and private sector, so that financial resources from all of these sectors can converge strategically and profits can be directly translated into social benefits to the involved communities.

-       To involve rural communities in the planning and operation of wind and solar parks as environmental services providers and guards of their natural resources.

-       To develop a certification of the parks that are transferring benefits to local communities -in form of investments in public infrastructure and livelihoods and education and health improvement, so that the final consumer of electricity can trace the environmental and social impacts of the complex where his electricity is coming from.

-       To invite private companies to invest in the delivery of social co-benefits of wind and solar parks as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility strategy. 

Who will take these actions?


Authorities from the federal, state and municipal governments, the communities owners of the ejidos, private energy companies

Where will these actions be taken?


In the park’s area and its adjacent zone where the communities are established.

How much will emissions be reduced or sequestered vs. business as usual levels?

An stimate from the following table should be calculated:


What are other key benefits?

What are the proposal’s costs?


We have made an stimate of 8,000 us for the rural / local área of Xalapa, Veracruz - MEXICO: 


2.- and

3.- Business Plan:

and the Natural Reserve we have in charge:,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.&bvm=bv.43148975,d.b2I&ion=1&biw=1366&bih=667&q=xalapa&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x85db321ca1f225d9:0x584837bc4340a47c,Xalapa+Enr%C3%ADquez,+VER&gl=mx&sa=X&ei=9Es2UdGbJofa2QWq8YHIBw&sqi=2&ved=0CJQBELYD


Time line


Here its our time line: 6 months

Related proposals


The mission of our Institute:

Environment and Sustainability:



BP’s Energy Outlook 2030

Mexico’s 5th National Communication to the UNFCCC

Mexico’s National Energy Strategy 2012-2026

OECD Environmental Performance Review: Mexico 2013