New Mexico, the heaviest state in coal to have promised 100% carbon-free energy by 2045


Blue sky on solar panels.
Enlarge / Solar Photovoltaic Network of the University of New Mexico at Taos Campus.

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On Tuesday, the House of Representatives of the State of New Mexico passed the "Energy Transition Act," which commits the state to derive 100% of its energy from carbon-free sources of energy. here 2045. The law was passed by the state Senate last week. The bill is now awaiting the signing of New Mexico's Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham.

Governor Grisham's office announced Tuesday at GreenTechMedia that she would "sign the bill as soon as possible".

The bill includes interim targets providing that 50% of the state 's energy mix is ​​renewable by 2030 and that 80% of it is renewable by 2040. At present, the state does not buy nuclear energy, which is not renewable but can be described as zero carbon energy. source. The bill passed yesterday does not require that 100% of state energy be renewable by 2045; it simply states that no electricity comes from a carbon-emitting source.

This initiative links New Mexico to California and Hawaii, the only two other states to have enacted a 100% carbon – free energy commitment by 2045.

New Mexico is unique among these states because it is relatively heavy in coal and produces 1.5 gigawatts of electricity from coal in November 2018.

Last month, the utility company of the State of New Mexico announced the closure of its 847 MW coal-fired power plant in San Juan by 2022, but a New York hedge fund called Acme Equities has announced its intention to buy back the 46-year power station. According to Power Magazine, Acme intends to modernize the plant with carbon capture and sequestration technology. If the agreement were successful, Acme would use captured carbon for enhanced oil recovery, with carbon being forced into old or weak oil wells to improve well pressure and extract more oil.

But with the passing of this bill, Acme's offer could not be retained. New Mexico In Depth writes that the bill spends "$ 30 million to clean up the [San Juan] a coal-fired power plant and the mine that supplies it, as well as $ 40 million for economic diversification efforts in this part of the state and support for the employees and miners of the power plants involved. "

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