At an April 22 summit hosted by US President Joe Biden, in which various countries volunteered to end global warming, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) defended his country on oil use.
He also said that Mexico has received three major hydrocarbon deposits, but tried to portray this as a development that should be exciting rather than a threat to the conference.
“Even though we have found three hydrocarbons with large reservoirs,” said the President, “the fuel we find will meet the fuel that is sold in the domestic market, and the export process will not be completed.” In doing so, he added, “we will help prevent the overuse of fuel.”
While the AMLO’s speech at the conference criticized many people who saw it as a “declaration of war on clean energy”, there is more to the Mexican leader’s views on oil production than the sudden neglect of an emergency.
Verifying ‘supervisory power’
At home and abroad, AMLO has established Mexico’s reliance on major oil and gas exports as a “powerhouse” problem. In response to this crisis, it has strengthened state-owned enterprises in the power generation and oil industry, and has also prioritized the use of oil. The reforms were part of AMLO’s strong efforts from 2019 to (reform) the country’s oil reserves.
The concept of “control power” has it roots in a war against colonialism in Mexico, when the country expelled US and British companies that oppressed their countries and made them the rulers of their economies.
By the end of the 20th century, US and British companies were beginning to acquire oil reserves in Mexico. Even by 1921 these companies had increased Mexican oil to become second only to the US, wealth from the group returned to the US and Britain, and did not really help fix the Mexican economy – colonial ties to persecution.
These foreign companies had British and US citizens only in their key positions. In addition, a Mexican worker received half the pay and poor housing for having the same job as a foreign worker.
Article 27 of the Mexican law of 1917 gave the Mexican government the right to confiscate items such as oil. But the establishment of the case proved to be impossible due to the dangerous resistance of oil companies backed by the U.S. Department of State.
The leadership of Lazarus Cardenas (1934-1940) marked a major change: it oversaw the distribution of vast territories and supported the rights of workers. In the case of oil, Mexican officials under the supervision of its supervisors agreed with the Mexican workers who went on strike and demanded that oil companies increase their salaries and benefits, but the companies refused to comply.
In response, Cardenas used Article 27 and exhibited foreign companies in Mexico on March 18, 1938 – which enabled the state-owned PEMEX to control its own oil. During this time, Cardenas also established a state-owned CFE, which specializes in the production and distribution of electrical energy.
The move brought major celebrations to Mexico, including 6 hours in Mexico City. Although the US felt that the military had intervened, they chose not to intervene because World War II had begun and the US had lost its allies.
The establishment of foreign power companies in Mexico was a milestone not only for the country but also for world history: Mexico, a country that will soon be part of the “Third World”, represented the rulers and conquered them. The same certainty of self-defense had a different effect – the US-1953 suppression of Iran, which took place after the Iranian government set up British and US oil companies, completely changed the course of the country.
Despite all the success that has been achieved as a result of the establishment of other countries, over the past few decades Mexico’s next president has gradually liberated the electricity sector, which has led Mexico to rely on countries like the US for electricity sales despite its old oil reserves.
AmLO’s predecessor, Pena Nieto, has finally released the electricity sector and asked foreign companies to use the Mexican oil reserves. His idea is to do this and make the team work better and deal with the major corruption in PEMEX.
Nieto’s move, however, has not helped to tackle corruption – government officials such as Emilio Lozoya have prosecution The recipients of large bribes from corporations seeking corporate finance.
In addition, the liberation of the power sector has been recognized by many in Mexico, including the AMLO, as a return to the pre-1938 genocide.
In this regard, it is easy to see why AMLO has called it an “electric power” and is working to end its dependence on global energy everywhere. However, the commitment of the President of Mexico to the use of the past oil needs to be re-examined in the event of a global catastrophe.
Away from climate problems
Criticism of what AMLO has done recently – from the western government adults, coercive groups and especially, Western journalists – have been brave and followed two chapters. The first is market preferences. For example, the US Chamber of Commerce (USCC) – which is committed to maintaining the neoliberal system – said it was concerned that AMLO’s electronic policies could undermine the “confidence” of foreign investors and prevent Mexico from receiving much-needed funding. In addition, it has raised concerns that these issues may be self-inflicted – perhaps because at present the regulator will not be under USCC control.
The second criticism focuses on the environment, while the AMLO is criticized for its “presence oil”. This is true, but outside of Mexico – especially in the West – it is described in a way that ignores what AMLO is trying to achieve by supporting oil: renewable energy.
Western journalists and government officials are refusing to accept Mexico’s history of colonial oppression by investigating – and criticizing – AMLO’s electronic policies expose Western history and deception.
But there are also clear indications that AMLO – which is trying to make its actions as anti-neoliberal and anti-colonial by asking for “electrical power” – is not taking climate problems seriously and its principles do not support another form of violence.
How can the AMLO be anti-colonial or anti-neoliberal while explaining western methods of non-existent, economic oppression using oil?
AMLO’s electrical system is clearly oil-free and there are no indicators of increased energy efficiency. National Energy Plan 2020-2024 states that for “sustainable energy” it is necessary to increase hydrocarbon monitoring, construction and energy efficiency. They focus on achieving energy efficiency using hydrocarbons and “clean energy”, while the rest include natural gas and nuclear energy.
But the “energy efficiency” that can be achieved by exploring hydrocarbons and saving money can be long lasting according to oil reserves.
Mexico’s well-known oil and gas reserves are only 9.3 years old while global reserves are expected to be 40-50 years old. The duration of AMLO, therefore, can be as short as ten years.
In addition, in view of AMLO’s natural resources, it is difficult to say that its regulators are not resisting climate change. In its recent commitments to the Paris Agreement in 2020, Mexico has completely abandoned its commitment in 2015 to get 35% of the energy needed from clean matter by 2024 and 43% by 2030. The head of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources has changed three times in m. ‘two years. His last secretary, Víctor Toledo, resigned after being found to have argued that the AMLO organization lacked a “clear, full of ambitions and ambitions” in relation to the environment. The department’s budget was reduced, while government allocations were increased at oil refineries and destructive tourism activities such as Tren Maya. In addition, according to the Climate Transparency group (PDF), about 73% of the climate change budget is spent on gas operations.
Finally, the AMLO has linked corruption in the electronics sector with the relocation of people to other institutions and the intelligence policies of the previous governments.
While this has many advantages, AMLO is promoting PEMEX and CFE as if these agencies have not been filled with bribes, and if there are no necessary measures to tackle corruption.
The “fight against corruption” of AMLO executives has been based on falsehoods and not actions. For example, the former leader of the PEMEX alliance, Carlos Romero Deschamps, “voluntarily agreed to resign” and left with the benefits of retirement in March despite being investigated for bribery. Similarly, CFE General Director Manuel Bartlett, who is accused of illegally obtaining goods worth more than $ 42m and hiding them in public records, received all the AMLO support and was eventually released.
In short, while the future of the Mexican people, as well as the whole humanity, is left to the climate, we see the arrogance of Western (neo) empires, who do not care to acknowledge – without apology – their persecution in Mexico. On the other hand, we have the heads of post-colonial post-colonial countries, such as the AMLO, whose anti-colonial and anti-neoliberal ideas do not match the urgent needs of climate change and society.
The views expressed in this article are for the authors only and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editor of Al Jazeera.