The new reliability policy for the electrical system, published by the Ministry of Energy on May 15, includes higher requirements for the installation of solar panels in homes and businesses, which will increase its cost and availability, specialists warned. Read: Unemployment Mortgage Credit Warned

This policy requires, among other things, that distributed generation – solar panels in houses and shops, among others – have the installation of “smart inverters”.

These are systems that, in addition to regulating the voltage and power of the energy, would allow the system controller, which in this case could be the National Energy Control Center (Cenace), to stop receiving energy from the solar panels.

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Jorge Arrambide, energy specialist at the Santos Elizondo Office, said that this new requirement will increase the cost and availability of distributed generation.

“It is out of place because, on the one hand, it gives control of small plants (exempt generation) to Cenace to shut them down and, on the other hand, it will make the equipment more expensive by requiring them to have these tools.

Víctor Ramírez, from the Mexico Climate and Energy Platform, agreed that this provision will increase the investment cost of solar panels.

He also considered that controlling distributed generation is necessary to a certain extent, however, the penetration of these systems in Mexico has not yet reached that point, representing just 1 percent.

These measures were contemplated in the original legislation by the time distributed generation reached 5 percent of installed capacity. “

Arrambide said that another change to the detriment of distributed generation is that the new plants must carry out interconnection studies based on the electrical topology, concentration of load centers and units of power plants.

“A previously non-existent and bureaucratic requirement is added that will result in lengthening the installation times of distributed generation in homes and shops, as well as increasing the cost for users by having to send in these studies.”