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San Diego State University

Experience Energy

Common Experience Seminar: Energy Management in Baja California Sur, Mexico

This seminar on ‘Energy Management and Implications for Sustainable Development in Baja California Sur, Mexico’ will build-upon the current academic and research partnerships that exist between San Diego State University (SDSU) and Universidad Autónoma de Baja California Sur (UABCS), and allow for enhancing cooperation between the two institutions in addressing the common future challenges facing coastal development and Marine Protected Areas in Baja California, Sur, Mexico and San Diego, California. The seminar is intended for students and faculty in all SDSU Colleges.


Baja California Sur (BCS) is geographically isolated from the main Mexican electric grid and must import its energy resources. Electric power is brought to this part of the peninsula mainly through a transmission system that connects a series of petroleum-fueled thermal electric plants distributed across the state.


How much electrical power, if any, can be generated locally so it can be rendered a truly self-sustainable state? The answer lies in quantifying the available cost-effective sources of renewable energy that are close to the transmission line, assessing the distributed energy resources, understanding the regulatory and political environment, and catalyzing the will of the citizenry to develop these resources.


There is a large potential for renewable energy in Mexico. With the exception of large-scale hydro, however, little of it is deployed. The same is true for BCS where wind and solar are the predominant sources of renewable energy in the region. BCS has significant solar resources, but no consistent year-round wind resources.


Unfortunately, due to the high cost of solar electric production, the only economically viable use of solar energy is for water heating and electric generation for off-grid communities and small tourist resorts located near the coastal zones. Hence, it makes sense to examine BCS’s energy supply in the context of the existing regional transmission grid.


The challenges for more widespread use of renewable energy in BCS are several. Renewable energy is often perceived as being costly, is not always available (causing potential reliability problems for the utility), and must operate in an unfavorable regulatory environment. Furthermore, there is neither a culture nor a local political impetus to produce energy sustainably. The seminars will address how obstacles to sustainable energy production can be overcome by the economic, social and environmental benefits that renewables offer.

Speakers Biography

Dr. Oscar A. Arizpe C Dr. Oscar A. Arizpe C. holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the National University of Mexico (UNAM), a Master’s degree in Fisheries Ecology at the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN), and PhD from IPN- Lowestoft Research Institute, England. Dr. Arizpe Is fulltime professor of the Autonomous University of Baja California Sur (UABCS) in La Paz, Mexico. He is the Director of the Laboratory of Coastal Systems Ecology, and Member of Mexican System of Researchers. His first papers were related with Populations Dynamics of Fisheries. For the last 20 years, he has been working and publishing within Integrated Management of Coastal and Natural Protected Areas, and prospective analysis.


Dr. Alfredo Sergio Bermudez ContrerasDr. Alfredo Sergio Bermudez Contreras holds a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the School of Chemistry at UNAM (Mexico City) and a Master’s degree in Renewable Energy from Murdoch University (Perth, Australia) and PhD researching in renewable energy powered seawater desalination at Loughborough University‘s Centre for Renewable Energy Systems Technology (CREST) in the UK where he also worked as a Research Associate in the Networks and Systems group and in their on-campus and distance learning Renewable Energy Systems Technology MSc programs. In 2012 Dr. Bermudez joined the Autonomous University of Baja California Sur (UABCS) in La Paz, Mexico, where between 2012 and 2014 he was a postdoctoral fellow (CONACYT),and currently works within the Renewable Energy Sources Engineering undergraduate program at UABCS where his main focus is on the study of the overall energy system in Baja California Sur. He also collaborates closely with civil society and governmental organizations in topics related to renewable energy, energy use, air quality and environmental education in Baja California Sur.

Jarabe Mexicano


Taking their name from the Spanish reference to traditional forms of mariachi music, the ensemble Jarabe Mexicano incorporates the diversity of their musical training into a vast Latin repertoire that includes traditional Boleros, Huapangos, Sones, and Rancheras as well as contemporary Cumbias, Reggae, Doo Wop, and American Standards. The dynamic energy and festive nostalgia of this musical fusion appeals to wide audiences, from children to adults. A recent appearance at the Independence Day Celebration of the Mexican Consulate met with a typical enthusiastic response, with attendees dancing along with the compelling musical rhythms. This five-person group features the talents of lead vocalist Gustavo Alcoser, band leader Mario Equia on requinto (a small guitar), Kevin Lomez on vijuela (a guitar-shaped instrument associated with mariachi music), bassist Oskar Beckmann, and percussionist Alex Tapia.

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Event Details:

Common Experience Seminar: Energy Management in Baja California Sur, Mexico


Special performance before and after event by Jarabe Mexicano



Date: December 2nd, 2015


Time: 12:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m.


Location: Theater (Aztec Student Union)


Faculty Leader: Dr. Vinod Sasidharan, Professor, Hospitality and Tourism Management


Speakers: Dr. Oscar A. Arizpe C and Dr. Alfredo Sergio Bermudez Contreras, Universidad Autónoma de Baja California Sur

Solar Panels
San Juanico Laguna San Ignacio
Gulf Mouth Aerial View
Panorama of a cloud of smoke
wooden house
Jarabe Instruments
Jarabe Mexicano