November 22 (Renewables Now) - Several renewable power generators in Mexico have filed a legal injunction in an attempt to contest a recent government decision to allow old state-owned clean energy producers to qualify for clean energy certificates (CELs).
CELs, introduced in Mexico's 2013-2014 energy reform, are market instruments that large power consumers, including state-owned utility CFE, and energy traders are required to buy in proportion to the amount of energy from non-clean sources which they have purchased. The purchase and trading of CELs have spurred renewable energy development, and, alongside corporate power purchase agreements (PPAs), have given rise to new projects at lower costs.
In a joint statement issued on Wednesday, Mexican wind power association Amdee and its solar counterpart Asolmex said the new rules, signed off by the energy ministry, have distorted the purpose of CELs entirely. The changes violate environmental rights, destroy the value of renewables energy assets already in operation and set a precedent to enact legal modifications by administrative route that reduces investor confidence in Mexico, the organisations claim.
The energy ministry justified the new law by saying that CELs, being instruments that are bought and sold, can be susceptible to market speculation. It is this speculation that has driven prices of electricity generated by clean energy sources.
The wind and solar associations retorted that exactly the opposite happened, citing low prices obtained in Mexico's renewable energy auction.