China: 2.83 GW of solar to be installed under Golden Sun program
11. DECEMBER 2012 | APPLICATIONS & INSTALLATIONS, GLOBAL PV MARKETS, INDUSTRY & SUPPLIERS | BY: BECKY BEETZ/WENJING FENG
China's Ministries of Finance, and Science and Technology, and its National Energy Administration have released figures for the second batch of projects under the Golden Sun Program. Overall, it is expected that 2.835 GW of solar will be installed.
The second batch of Golden Sun projects has been announced.
A total of 2.835 GW of solar projects will be installed across China under the next batch of the government’s Golden Sun Program, it has been announced today, December 11. In addition to publishing a list of the projects to be installed in the various provinces, the government has also identified the companies that will work on them.
At 268 MW, Yingli Green Energy is expected to supply approximately 10% of the photovoltaic modules required for the projects. Meanwhile, Trina Solar will work on the around 10 MW Trina Solar Golden Sun demonstration project in Jiangsu Province.
Also in Jiangsu Province, EGing Photovoltaic Technology Co., Ltd has been given the go ahead to undertake a 13.6 MW rooftop project, and in Jiangxi Province,
will work on an around 16 MW demostration project in Shangrao Economic and technical development Zone.
LDK SoLar Hi-TEch (HeFei) Co., Ltd has also been awarded two projects – the 20 MW Solar-power project in Ezhou agriculture demonstration unit in Hubei Province, and 20 MW worth of Net power generation projects in China’s Hunan Province.
Access the full list (in Chinese).
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Overall, it was felt that China’s new Presidential appointments will bode well for the domestic photovoltaic market, and that Guangdong and China are about to do a lot more in distributed photovoltaic power.
Li Keqiang’s appointment should be good news for China's photovoltaic industry.
Xi Jinping is set to become the country’s new President, succeeding the current President Hu Jintao, and Li Keqiang will take over from Wen Jiabao as the country’s Premier.
According to Professor Hui Shen, Director of the Institute for Solar Energy Systems at Sun Yat-Sen University and one of the leading photovoltaic experts in Guangdong province, Li Keqiang’s appointment should be good news for the country’s photovoltaic industry, since Li as China’s Vice Premier has been a leading advocate of renewable energy adoption in China.
No doubt due to Li’s efforts, Premier Wen Jiabao recently pushed the country’s grid monopolies to move faster to integrate renewable energy sources like photovoltaics. And increasingly, the Chinese government is promoting distributed photovoltaics, such as the recent 500 MW per province program, which by itself could add 15 GW of distributed photovoltaics by the end of the current 12th Five Year Plan (2011 to 2015).
In his presentation, Shen lamented the fact that Guangdong had not done more to promote photovoltaics in recent years. For example, a plan to install 5 MW on the new Scientific Center in the province’s capital, Guangzhou was scrapped and the 240 KW put on the city’s new railway station was described as "kind of measly" by Shen.
And when the Asian Games were held in Guangdong recently, the organizers showed no interest in using solar energy. So there was clearly frustration in Shen’s depiction of the status quo, but hope that leaders like Li could push things forward and also challenge provincial and local officials to do more to support the photovoltaics industry.
As the recent central government initiatives regarding accelerated access to the grid and the promotion of distributed PV show, the policy and regulatory framework is in fact becoming increasingly favorable to photovoltaic installations in this country.
Guangchun Zhang, Senior Vice President of Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd has said that China's top economic planning body, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), is about to announce additional policies to boost the domestic photovoltaics market further.
Zhang chairs SEMI’s China PV Standards Committee and more critically serves as a key intermediary between China’s photovoltaic industry, and the central government and key ministries like NDRC. He is pushing the government to adjust its photovoltaics subsidy system to take into account the country’s wide range of solar resources and provide additional support to distributed photovoltaics and self-consumption.
While many people regard the solar resources of Guangdong as inadequate, Shen set the record straight that Guangdong’s solar resources are actually better than Beijing’s, which has a lot of sunshine, but little rain to clear the air and clean the photovoltaic modules.
Luo Duo, Chief Engineer at China Singyes Solar Technologies Holdings Limited, a Guangdong solar developer, showed the money-saving potential of photovoltaics in a smart micro-grid project her company is developing in Dong’ao island near Zhuhai. A tour of Dong’ao is on the Forum’s program and Dong’ao is now powered largely by renewable sources, including a 100 KW system on its tourism center and a 256.7 KW system on its cultural center.
Having shifted from 100% diesel to 70% renewables and 30% diesel, the island has reduced its electricity bill dramatically – from RMB 3.8/kWh to just RMB 1.9/kWh – and made this tourist attraction even more popular with visitors.
As if to demonstrate the hope and potential that exists in Guangdong, a tour of Lecong Steel World, a massive new steel manufacturing site and mixed development project in Shunde district, that is largely still on the drawing board, but promises to deliver 60 MW of roof-top PV to this new development.
There were not yet any solar modules to be seen, but the air was thick with promise that Guangdong and China were about to do a lot more in distributed PV power.
Quickly becoming the new industry buzzword, distributed power generation, led by photovoltaics, is set to "rapidly" expand over the next five years to reach an annual installation rate of 63.5 GW by 2017.
Photovoltaics is leading the decentralized energy revolution.
According to Pike Research's latest Renewable Distributed Energy Generation
report, centralized energy generation is becoming more costly and, when taking into consideration an expanding population with escalating energy needs, decentralized structures are increasingly presenting more cost-effective options. Specifically, it says renewable distributed energy generation (RDEG) is "uniquely positioned to disrupt this traditional paradigm".
Over the next five years, the research company predicts that RDEG will grow almost three-fold to reach annual installations of 63.5 GW a year in 2017. Between now and then, it says nearly 232 GW of capacity will be added, of which photovoltaics is expected to account for 210 GW.
In 2011, 20.6 GW of RDEG was said to have been installed, thus representing global revenues of US$66.5 billion. Europe is the leader in terms of installed capacity, with Germany and Italy reportedly accounting for 58 percent of the market. Meanwhile, in the Asia Pacific region, China was said to comprise 49 percent of all RDEG installations.
For this year, Pike Research estimates that while Europe, North America and Asia Pacific will continue to lead growth, markets like Africa and the Middle East are becoming "indispensable". "Europe will continue to be the largest market for RDEG during this forecast period … but Asia Pacific, led by China, will grow the fastest as untapped domestic markets for RDEG installations emerge," write the authors.
They add, "North America, led by the United States, will see significant growth as the cost of renewable energy approaches that of conventional energy in many parts of the country and the solar lease and power purchase agreement business models gain momentum. Meanwhile … developing countries are increasingly looking to RDEG technologies as a critical piece to their short- and long-term growth."
This swing from centralized to decentralized is said to have been driven by a shift in the economic, environmental, social and political landscapes, following such changes as the modern scale of fossil fuel and renewable energy systems, and growing environmental concerns.
The report’s authors add, "The centralized power generation, transmission, and distribution model is growing more costly to maintain at current levels, let alone expand to meet the rising electricity needs of growing (and increasingly city-dwelling) populations. Therefore, despite being smaller in scale, renewable distributed energy generation (RDEG) sources such as distributed solar photovoltaics (PV), small wind, and stationary fuel cells, with less need for transmission and little to no emissions, are uniquely poised to turn the 20th century power production paradigm on its head."
They go on to point out the two energy concepts are not mutually exclusive, and admit that RDEG, which currently contributes less than one percent to the total electricity generated, is still in its infancy, compared to centralized energy models.
"That said," they state, "RDEG is rapidly maturing and expected to play an increasingly important role in meeting the energy challenges of the 21st century. One such indicator is that in a growing number of cases around the world, RDEG technologies are more cost-effective than centralized installations that require transmission to population centers. In many ways, the overall momentum is shifting to RDEG sources that inherently provide consumers more control over the electricity they consume and generate."
In order for RDEG to realize its full potential however, Pike Research says investments must be made, new business models created, technology developed, and utilities must become involved. Furthermore, they believe such financing options as solar leasing programs, will help drive the market as the technology becomes more available to end-consumers.