Mexico City Shows the Way to Solar Obligations in Central America
 Mexico City Shows the Way to Solar Obligations in Central America

swimming pool installation in Mexico City

Mexico City Shows the Way to Solar Obligations in Central America

Larger flat plate collector systems are gaining momentum in Mexico city, thanks to a Environmental Norm which makes solar water heaters mandatory. The photo shows a 144 m2 collector field of a public swimming pool in the district of Miguel Hidalgo in Mexico City. Quelle: GTZ / Foto: Marco A. Lemus

The almost 9 million inhabitants make Mexico City one of the ten most populated cities in the world. In April 2006 the city introduced an Environmental Norm that has been a ground-breaking achievement and sets an example for many major cities throughout the region and across the globe. The city government made it mandatory for new and totally refurbished facilities, (using hot water domestically, in kitchens and for washing and cleaning), to cover at least 30 % of their hot water demand through solar technology.

City / country Mexico City / Mexico
Name Environmental Norm NADF008-AMBT-2005 on the use of solar energy  (see attached document)
Goal The standard is to establish criteria for the use of solar energy water heating, minimum quality requirements and technical specifications regarding installation, operation and maintenance of systems
Date when directive came into effect April 2006
Target group New facilities, which require hot water for their activities – including swimming pools and companies with more than 51 employees – are to cover 30 % of the hot water demand through solar energy. This rule applies to all hot water that is used domestically, in kitchens, as well as for washing and cleaning.
Private households and entrepreneurs with no more than 51 employees are not subject to this solar obligation.  If a building undergoes “total refurbishment”, it will become mandatory as well to install a solar thermal system.
Special requirements
  • Five-year performance guarantee on collectors
  • Pumps, controls and other electrical and electronic devices have to have a guarantee of at least one year
  • Collectors will have to fulfill the NMX-ES-001-Normex-2005 standard, no later than one year after this regulation came into force.
Exceptions: It is possible to install a smaller capacity, in case the company can prove that it will not be able to install a solar thermal installation covering 30 % of the warm water consumption (e.g., lack of space or too much shade).
Last review of this tabloid July 2009
Contact Gobierno del Distrito Federal
Mr Oscar Vázquez
Director del Programa de Cambio Climático y Proyectos MDL 06068 México, D.F., México
phone: +52 (55) 53458190 – ext. 321


Baerbel Epp

Bärbel Epp is Founder and Director of the German communication and market research agency solrico and editor-in-chief of