In Yucatán we have assumed the commitment to work hand in hand, society and authorities to address the current climate crisis through the use of efficient energy generation technologies and the transition of the transportation sector towards a low-carbon model, emphasizing sustainable mobility and social equity, stated Governor Mauricio Vila Dosal during the discussion panel “Global Cooperative Action at the Subnational Level for the elimination of fossil fuels.”
As part of its activities at the United Nations Climate Change Conference 2023 (COP28), held in the United Arab Emirates, Vila Dosal participated in the meeting that seeks to explore the current and potential leadership of states, regions and cities in the elimination fossil fuel progressive; as well as identify key solutions and collaboration opportunities moving forward.
In this framework, the Governor recognized that the inventory of greenhouse gas emissions in Yucatán showed a worrying increase in 2018, in the pollutants that cause climate change, in response, his administration has intensified efforts to strengthen the regulatory framework, develop public policies and implement projects to reduce emissions.
“One of our main focuses has been the transition of the transportation sector towards a low-carbon model, emphasizing sustainable mobility and social equity through the ‘Fair Transportation’ initiative. Efforts include a focus on sustainable mobility that promotes efficient and dignified transportation. This system operates 350 efficient buses, with plans for IE-TRAM, a 100% electric public transportation system that connects metropolitan communities,” he emphasized.
In his participation, Vila Dosal explained that the IE-TRAM new transportation system is the outcome of a collaboration between Federal, State and Municipal governments, as well as the private sector that represents 2.8 billion pesos in investment, with environmental certifications and universal accessibility measures, an initiative that is aligned with broader objectives of creating equitable and efficient cities, emphasizing the role of mobility in social inclusion.
“The government emphasizes environmental sustainability, as evidenced by its commitment to managing and coordinating with the federal government for the construction of a 150-megawatt renewable energy park to power the electricity for this new transportation system. The comprehensive approach includes not only the reduction of emissions, but also prioritizes accessibility, environmental certifications and interconnectivity between different modes of transport. Overall, Yucatán’s multifaceted strategy underscores its commitment to addressing climate change and promoting sustainable and inclusive urban development,” he asserted.
Vila Dosal highlighted that, although climate change is a global problem that requires an effective solution at the local and regional level, involving the government, society, academia and the private sector, in Yucatán, a firm commitment has been made to advance in achieving national and international objectives to address the current climate crisis.
“For this reason, it has been crucial to work in synergy between the states that make up the Yucatan Peninsula, joining efforts and resources in climate matters, as well as coordinating and implementing regional mitigation and adaptation initiatives. Yucatán began the process to create synergies and increase the ambition of decarbonization objectives including tourism mobility, cargo routes and services between the 3 neighboring states; We lead the confirmation and signing of the “Peninsular Pact for the Decarbonization of Transport”. All this as a result of the transportation sector being the main source of greenhouse gas emissions at the national level,” he stressed.
In that sense, he explained that access to mobility is certainly one of the main causes of urban inequality, since it determines access to opportunities such as employment, education and health services, therefore, promoting sustainable, clean and efficient in this sector will ensure active and coordinated participation in the fight against climate change and the achievement of sustainable development goals.
In the panel, the Governor reiterated that, from Yucatán, more ambitious commitments have been assumed, establishing that the state reaches zero emissions by 2050. This will be included in the Special Program for Climate Change, the governing instrument of environmental policy, which will soon be published and that will fulfill the “Race to Zero” initiative.
Additionally, Yucatán is committed to using efficient energy generation technologies and increasing the use of renewable energy. In that case, he highlighted that they currently have five large-scale projects, including three wind farms and two photovoltaic plants with a combined capacity of 300 megawatts. These energy generation projects contribute to covering 25% of the state’s total energy consumption with renewable energy.
To continue forming ties that allow the state to continue caring for the environment, the Governor held a meeting with the executive vice president of the Coalition for Reducing Emissions through the Acceleration of Forest Financing (LEAF), Rocío Sanz Cortés, where they worked on a financing proposal for the conservation of tropical and subtropical forests in accordance with the scale of the challenge of climate change.
As part of his agenda at this summit, Vila Dosal met with the director of NICFI/Deputy Director General of the Department of Sustainability and Transition of the Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment, Andreas Dahl-Jørgensen, to talk about progress with the Ventana B project, which has strengthened good practices in the Mayan milpa, beekeeping and meliponiculture.
In that sense, it was recalled that Yucatán has already received more than 50 million pesos from the Government of Norway and we seek to promote more sustainable productive activities with zero deforestation that take care of our environment.
At the meeting, it was also agreed to explore the possibility of a next stage of the Ventana B project, which has had excellent results in adaptation issues and the strengthening of sustainable use and production in the southern area of our state with communities and ejidos.