The concept of sustainable development with three-dimensional formula was used to compare the sustainability of the electricity industry in Mexico and its northern border. Energy indicators for economic, social, and environmental dimensions were applied to the electricity industry between 1993 and 2006. According to the resulting indicators there was no balance between the dimensions. The environmental dimension yielded the least sustainable one, whereas the social dimension yielded the most sustainable indicator both in Mexico and in its northern border. The economic dimension presented greater differences in the indicators between Mexico and its northern border. The global indicator showed that sustainability in Mexicos northern border is higher than it is in Mexico. Energy policies must be applied to increase the sustainability of most indicators, to achieve a balance between the dimensions and to obtain progress toward sustainable development electrical power. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.