On May 19th, the Mexican Alliance against Fracking denounced that this extraction method, recognized for its multiple dangers to the environment, is still present in Mexico, despite the commitment of the Government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) to ban it: “We have seen new signs, and already with decisions taken without a doubt by the current administration, that ‘fracking’ continues,” it assured in a conference detailing that the National Hydrocarbons Commission (CNH) approved six exploration plans related to this technique in 2019, in addition to giving the green light to another that also includes it. It also reported that the state-owned oil company Petroleos Mexicanos (PEMEX) would implement six of these seven exploration contracts.
The Mexican Alliance against Fracking concluded, based on its investigations, that “all the aforementioned shows that it is necessary for the government and the Legislative Branch to take immediate measures to make the 4T commitments reality in acts that prevent fracking from being used and, consequently protect the population, the environment and the climate from this harmful technique, the damages of which cannot be avoided as they are inherent to it, as has been demonstrated by its use elsewhere.”
In his morning conference this same day, Lopez Obrador rejected the accusations stating: “Today I saw a note that permits for fracking were authorized in 2019. It is not true and I am going to investigate it. We said no to fracking, no to mining left and right, we have not awarded a single mining concession, among other things because there are millions of hectares under concession from the neoliberal period that are not even being exploited.”
Some media highlight that this discussion is taking place in a troubled energy sector after several changes in recent weeks: in April, the National Center for Energy Control (CENACE) published an agreement that prevents operational tests in clean energy plants that were about to open; and just a few days ago, a new regulation was presented that has also been strongly criticized by private initiative when it “contemplates changes in criteria, since now the regulator will choose by means of a ‘reliability’ criterion, without privileging the lower economic cost of the energy, which could favor state-owned PEMEX and the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) to the detriment of renewables”, EFE notes.
For more information in Spanish:
Información oficial confirma que el fracking sigue avanzando en México (Alianza mexicana contra el fracking, 19 de mayo de 2020)
Pese a promesas, 4T aprueba siete propuestas de fracking (El Universal, 19 de mayo de 2020)
Pemex continúa perforando con fracking, denuncia red de ONG (El Economista, 19 de mayo de 2020)
Asegura AMLO que investigará si CNH autorizó 19 permisos para el fracking (El Universal, 19 de mayo de 2020)
AMLO niega que haya dado permisos para ‘fracking’ (Vanguardia, 19 de mayo de 2020)
For more information from SIPAZ:
National: Fracking or not in Mexico? (February 13, 2019)