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China's new energy sector moves into high gear amid pursuit for carbon goals

  • Aug 9, 2022
  • 201 views
Source: 
China Daily: Hong Kong Edition

BEIJING -- As construction of large-scale wind and photovoltaic power bases accelerates, China's new energy sector is expected to have greater growth potential this year amid efforts to achieve "dual carbon" goals.

In Urumqi, capital of Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, the construction of a wind power and photovoltaic base by China Huadian Corporation with a total installed capacity of 1 million kilowatts is progressing in full swing.

The project, which is among the first batch of large-scale wind and photovoltaic power bases greenlighted by the government, is expected to generate 2.5 billion kilowatt-hours of green electricity while saving consumption of 830,000 tons of standard coal and reducing carbon emissions of 2.1 million tons after completion.

All of the initial batches of such projects have thus far broken ground. The list of the second batch, which includes bases to be built in Inner Mongolia, Ningxia, Xinjiang, Qinghai and Gansu, has been released.

CONSIDERABLE ROOM FOR GROWTH

Experts believe that the promotion of new energy bases will significantly spur the development of the new energy industry.

In the first half of 2022, China's installed capacity of wind and photovoltaic power added 12.94 million kilowatts and 30.88 million kilowatts, accounting for 18.7 percent and 44.7 percent of total new capacity, respectively, data from the National Energy Administration showed.

Driven by the country's "dual carbon" goals, the new energy sector has become one of the few industries that features a high utilization rate without generating excess capacity, said Jiang Debin, an expert with the China Electricity Council.

Su Xinyi, an analyst with China Electric Power Planning & Engineering Institute, noted that the new energy sector will continue fast expansion in the second half.

China's newly installed capacity of wind and photovoltaic power for the entire year is expected to exceed 100 million kilowatts, while the consumption of power produced by the two energy sources is estimated to reach over 12.2 percent of total power consumption, Su said.

EFFICIENT UTILIZATION

In addition to boosting energy supply capacity, companies plan to double down on investments in projects including ultra-high voltage to improve the efficiency of new energy consumption.

The State Grid Corporation of China intends to inject 2.4 trillion yuan (about $354.53 billion) into the power grid during the 14th Five-Year Plan Period (2021-25) to advance the building of a new energy consumption system.

China Southern Power Grid plans a fixed-asset investment of 125 billion yuan this year, which partly will be directed to building supporting power grid projects for new energy transmission and pumped-storage hydroelectric projects.

Data from China Electric Power Planning & Engineering Institute showed China's new energy sector maintained a high-level utilization efficiency in the first half of this year. As of the end of June, the nationwide utilization rate of wind power stood at 95.8 percent, while that of photovoltaic power was 97.7 percent.

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