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MPhil in Engineering for Sustainable Development

global challenges, engineering solutions

Understanding the Importance of Regulation to Strengthen the Wind Energy Sector in Mexico

The global energy transition and current efforts to decarbonise societies has stimulated the use of renewable energy worldwide. Consequently, governments globally have been updating and creating policies, norms and regulations to support this energy transition. In Mexico, energy targets aim for 50% of total energy generation to come from clean sources by 2050. However, as opposed to other countries, in Mexico the introduction of regulation has been slow relative to the rapid growth of the wind energy sector. This has led to repercussions for the economy, the environment and society. 

This dissertation examines the role and importance of regulation for strengthening the wind energy sector in Mexico and the ways in which this can be achieved. It discusses how a robust regulatory framework and its continuous improvement can benefit all key stakeholders within the development of the sector. Furthermore, it identifies possible solutions to tackle social, economic and environmental issues.  

The proposed solutions are  grounded in the analysis of 60 issues pertaining to wind developments in Mexico that were identified from literature. Using document analysis, these issues were mapped against existing laws to determine which specifically are not addressed by Mexican law. The next step was the identification of suitable instruments (policies, norms and regulations) implemented in other countries to address such issues. All this work is supported by 22 interviews with key informants that confirm issues and proposed solutions.  

Key findings show that the majority (35) of the issues identified can be addressed  by existing regulation, while the other 25 issues do not have regulation to address them directly. Of the latter, 11 are due to technical matters in the planning stage and can be solved by using existing mechanisms in current law. The last 14 issues are not part of the scope of this study and require further research on how to address them. 


Course Overview


The need to engage in better problem definition through careful dialogue with all stakeholder groups and a proper recognition of context.


An ability to work with specialists from other disciplines and professional groups acknowledging that technical innovation and business skills also must be understood, nurtured and combined as precursors to the successful implementation of sustainable solutions.


An understanding of mechanisms for managing change in organisations so future engineers are equipped to play a leadership role.


An awareness of a range of assessment frameworks, sustainability metrics and methodologies such as Life Cycle Analysis, Systems Dynamics, Multi-Criteria Decision making and Impact Assessment.