Mexico to introduce radical climate law

By RTCC Staff

Mexico could become the second country worldwide to pass legislation on climate change (© kc_aplosweb/Creative Commons)

Mexico is set to become the second country worldwide to begin legislating against climate change, as its House of Representatives passed a climate law.

If passed by the Mexican Senate, the General Law on Climate Change will require the whole country to reduce its carbon by 50% by 2050.

The law will include potential rules to phase out fossil fuel subsidies and make renewable energy as competitive as oil, gas and coal.

It will also bind Mexico to a target of cutting carbon emissions by 30% by 2020 – with the help of international support – and for 35% of the country’s electricity to come from clean sources by 2024.

If adopted, the law will make Mexico the second country – after the UK – to pass comprehensive national climate change legislation.

Currently the 11th biggest emitter and the 11th largest economy, it is estimated that if Mexico continues on its current path it could be the 5th largest economy by 2050.

While some companies in the country’s steel and coal sectors have opposed the law, many companies from overseas have expressed a need for a national legal framework to build confidence in green investments in Mexico.

The proposal for the climate law also includes provision for “emissions markets” to help the country reach its targets.

WWF have showed strong support for the law in Mexico. Having urged politicians in the country to support the law, they welcomed the latest step towards implementing the legislation.

Samantha Smith, leader of the WWF Climate and Energy Initiative wrote on the WWF website: “In a world with nine billion people in 2050, “renewable” and “sustainable” will be essential, not just for nature but for basic access to food, water and energy.

“What makes this even more remarkable is that Mexico is not really a rich country. By the government’s own count, some 40% of the population lives in poverty. Yet its government and Congress see that ending poverty and growing the economy will be that much harder unless they, we, all of us do something about climate change.”

The law will now go before the Mexican Senate.

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