U.S. Department of Energy - Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
Water Power Program
New Mexico Mandates More Renewable Power and Helps to Transmit It
March 14, 2007
New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson signed two bills into law on March 5th that will dramatically increase the use of renewable energy
within the state. Senate Bill 418 adds new requirements to the state's
Renewable Portfolio Standard, which formerly required the state's
public utilities to draw on renewable energy for 10 percent of their
electricity needs by 2011. Under the new bill, public utilities must
continue ramping up after 2011, drawing on renewable energy for
15 percent of their electricity needs by 2015 and 20 percent by 2020.
The bill also requires rural electric cooperatives to draw on
renewable energy for 5 percent of their electricity needs by 2015,
increasing to 10 percent by 2020. The bill defines renewable energy as
coming from new hydropower facilities, from fuel cells that are not
fossil-fueled, and from biomass, solar, wind, and geothermal
resources. See the full text of Senate Bill 418 (PDF 59 KB).
Download Adobe Reader.
House Bill 188 establishes a Renewable Energy Transmission Authority
that will help New Mexico export electricity produced from solar and
wind energy and other renewable energy sources. The new seven-member
authority will have the power to issue bonds to finance the
construction of new transmission lines (and possibly energy storage
facilities) to serve new renewable energy facilities that are not
being served by the state's utilities. The developers of the renewable
energy projects will pay fees for using the transmission lines,
thereby helping to repay the bonds. The two new bills will work
together to encourage the construction of renewable energy power
facilities within the state. See the governor's press release and the full text of House Bill 188
(PDF 44 KB).