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Mexico will build 5 additional solar plants in Sonora

Sonora has become a test site for major solar energy projects in Mexico since the announcement last year that a massive new solar plant would be built near Rocky Point. Now, officials are planning additional facilities in the state.

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador says five more solar plants are in the works in Sonora.

Like the 1000-megawatt plant underway near Rocky Point, he says the additional facilities will be funded through joint public and private investments.

He says the plants are part of an effort to amp up the production of clean energy in Mexico — as well as for export to the United States. Earlier this month, he had announcedthat U.S. investors might contribute to such projects.

State Gov. Alfonso Durazo has said he wants Sonora to be a model for clean energy projects in Mexico. And says the massive Rocky Point facility is expected to be up and running by next year.

Kendal Blust, an Arizona native, reports from KJZZ’s bureau in Hermosillo, Sonora, focusing on business and economic relationships between Arizona and northern Mexico.Prior to joining KJZZ, Kendal worked at the Nogales International, reporting on border and immigration issues, local government, education and business. While working on her master’s degree at University of Arizona School of Journalism, she did stints with the Arizona Daily Star and the Tico Times in Costa Rica, and completed a thesis project about women art activists in the Arizona-Sonora borderlands.In her pre-journalist life, Kendal was a teacher, first helping Spanish high school students learn English, then heading to Tucson to teach fourth grade.When she’s not in the newsroom, Kendal enjoys getting outside for a hike or a swim, catching a good movie, hanging out with family and friends, and eating great food.