Mexico’s state-owned national oil company Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) announced earlier this year that it plans to significantly reduce crude petroleum exports in 2022 and phase out crude exports altogether by the end of 2023. The news was reported widely in domestic and international media. We have criticized President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) in this space, but in fairness we must acknowledge that he is clearly not afraid to launch bold and decisive new public policy initiatives, for better or worse. We continue to question, however, whether many of them are a good idea. Continue reading Mexico goes all-in on refining
Here in Mexico the big midterm elections coming up in June are absorbing a lot of attention right now, but before we talk about that we just wanted to make some comments on a topic currently flying a bit under the radar: Lithium mines. The issue is, prior administrations granted a number of concessions to foreign private companies for the exploration and eventual production of lithium in Mexico, and a small number of these companies have been out in the desert scratching around in hopes of finding a viable mining site. Two things make this more important to Mexico now than it may have seemed a few years ago: First, a massive lithium deposit in the northern state of Sonora is being developed by foreign capital with plans to begin commercial production within two years; and second, Mexico is currently governed by a president who views the private sector — and particularly foreign companies — to be exploiters, thieves and enemies of the nation. Continue reading AMLO to lithium: My precious!
We read in Morning Brew today that the International Energy Agency (IEA) is projecting that renewables will surpass coal as the primary source of energy generation by 2025. The Brew item actually says solar but the original Reuters story it links to says renewable sources. Either way, the growing importance of solar and other renewable energy sources combined with the tenuous outlook for fossil fuels continues to cast a dark shadow over President Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s campaign to prop up Mexico’s insolvent state oil company, Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex). The entire world is innovating and expanding generation capacity in clean, renewable energy, and the Mexican government is out here trying to get people to use more diesel. Absolute face palm. Continue reading Mexico unmoved by this trendy clean energy thing