Mexico’s CFE outlines plans for 32 new hydro projects

Mexican state power company Comision Federal de Electricidad (CFE) will construct 32 projects as part of a national plan to recover and increase hydroelectric generation capacity.

According to BNamericas, the plan includes 18 projects for restoring capacity at operating plants, with an investment of MXN10.4 billion (US$540 million) and 14 hydro generation projects for an investment of MXN9.2 billion (US$478 million). This announcement was made by Chief Executive Officer Manuel Bartlett at a press conference on Monday morning.

The hydro projects will be made in coordination with agricultural firms and they will add 214 MW to the national grid, Bartlett said.

The government’s earlier injection of MXN24 billion (US$1.2 billion) had already led to 5.8 GW in recovered capacity for CFE, helping to fund major rehabilitation efforts, he added.

Bartlett said President Andrés Manuel López Obrador had ordered the state-owned firm to place a renewed emphasis on energy generation, noting that previous regulatory decisions had limited generation and would force the company to “buy power from private generators.” The president has decided “that CFE should continue to generate 54% of electricity, reserving the remaining 46% for the private sector in order to have a balance between public and private generation.”

In 2017, about 17% of Mexico’s energy was generated by hydroelectric plants, versus 37% from combined cycle facilities, 17% from conventional thermoelectric, 7% from coal, 7% from gas turbines, 6% from wind, 3% from internal combustion and fluidized bed combustion, 3% from bioenergy and efficient co-generation, 2% from nuclear energy and 2% from geothermal/solar/generated distribution and other technologies.

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