March 11 (Renewables Now) - The New Mexico Senate has given the nod to the state’s Energy Transmission Act, calling for an increase in New Mexico’s renewable portfolio standard (RPS) to 80% by 2040, with a 50% interim goal by 2030.
Senate Bill 489, greenlighted on Wednesday, also introduces a 100% carbon-free power standard for investor-owned utilities in New Mexico by 2045. Its approval was supported by governor Michelle Lujan Grisham, who said the Act is “a groundbreaking push toward the clean energy future New Mexico,” moving the state away from an era of coal-fired power generation and making it a “national leader in clean energy.”
The bill has already been passed for review to the House of Representatives and the New Mexico Senate Finance Committee, according to the Senate’s website. If approval by the House is granted this month, the Act will become law.
In January, Pat O’Connell, director of planning and resources at Public Service Co of New Mexico, the state's largest utility, told local media that the 50% goal is "doable" in view of the falling prices for renewables. He then added that renewables are no longer an alternative power generation source but are "staple resources for the grid.”