The proposed Tesla production facility in Mexico has run into hurdles regarding inadequate power production in its potential location, but a new massive solar project may help alleviate these concerns.
Tesla is attempting to establish a new production location in Mexico to help it rapidly grow vehicle production in the coming year(s). However, concern about the factory’s power needs overwhelming the local grid has proved to be a significant hurdle. But with a massive new solar power project currently under construction in Northern Mexico, the automaker’s energy concerns may be addressed.
The massive solar power project in Baja, California, Mexico, dubbed “Project Sanora” after the desert it is located within, could answer Tesla’s concerns. Initially reported by Reuters, the solar project is estimated to cost $1.6 billion and, when completed, will be the largest solar project ever established in Latin America. However, without funding wholly secured for the project, it remains unclear how much power it will be able to produce.
Currently, roughly 10% of the solar panels have been mounted, though none have been hooked to the grid. The project was displayed late last week to national leaders and potential investors. The Mexican president heralded the project as the country’s key to a renewable future.
With such a massive solar project, residents would benefit from reduced energy costs, and the surrounding grid could easily benefit from increased stability, which is exactly what Tesla is looking for.
As pointed out by the Reuters report, Mexico is often cited as one of the ideal locations for solar power implementation. The country’s northern section has massive tracts of unpopulated desert, consistent sunlight thanks to its proximity to the equator, and low amounts of cloud cover that could limit the effectiveness of solar panels. Nonetheless, the Mexican government has had trouble embracing the technology, especially as crime and security concerns persist around the U.S.-Mexico border.
Hopefully, through the continued growth of solar projects in Mexico, Tesla and other automakers can increase their presence in the country. Along with bringing jobs and investment to underdeveloped locations in the country, it could also result (at least in this case) in more EVs for North America and up-and-coming Latin American markets.
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