China takes the lead in re­new­able en­ergy, as cost-ef­fec­tive­ness im­proves

China Daily (USA) - - BUSINESS - By YANG ZIMAN yangz­i­man@chinadaily.com.cn

China’s re­new­able en­ergy in­vest­ment con­sti­tutes onethird of the world’s in­vest­ment in the area, saidAd­nanZ. Amin, di­rec­tor-gen­eral of the In­ter­na­tion­alRe­new­ableEn­ergy Agency.

China’s to­tal in­vest­ment in re­new­able en­ergy last year was $102.9 bil­lion, up 17 per­cent from the same pe­riod the year be­fore, said Amin at the In­ter­na­tional Fo­rum on En­ergy Tran­si­tions held in Suzhou from Oct 30 to 31.

In­ter­na­tional in­vest­ment in re­new­able en­ergy was $330 bil­lion last year.

“China is tak­ing the lead in re­new­ableen­er­gy­de­vel­op­ment. Last year, China’s wind and hydropower newly-in­stalled ca­pac­ity ac­counted for more than half of the world’s to­tal. Its pho­to­voltaic newly-in­stalled ca­pac­ity­ac­count­ed­foronethird of the world’s to­tal,” he said.

The key to re­new­able en­ergy de­vel­op­ment is to lower the costs. The in­fra­struc­ture cost of pho­to­voltaic power has gone down by 70 per­cent from 2005, said Qu Xiaoye, pres­i­dent and founder of Cana­dian So­lar Inc based in On­tario, and it needs to drop fur­ther. Qu Xiaoye,

“China’s pho­to­voltaic power ac­counts for 1 per­cent of the coun­try’s to­tal power. In Ger­many, the pro­por­tion is 7 to 8 per­cent. With ef­fec­tive cost re­duc­tion, pho­to­voltaic power has great room for growth,” said Qu.

Ac­cord­ing to Qu, ev­ery one percentage point re­duc­tion in cost will lead to 5 per­cent re­duc­tion in price per kilo­watt hour. This is mainly to be achieved by tech­no­log­i­cal re­search to make the so­lar pan­els more cost ef­fec­tive.

Qu­said that the on-grid price of pho­to­voltaic power might be low­ered to the­samelevel as fossil fuel-fired power by 2022.

“An­other ma­jor cost is fi­nanc­ing. Most of the pho­to­voltaic com­pa­nies lease fa­cil­i­ties through fi­nan­cial leas­ing, which takes up 40 per­cent of the rev­enue. There­fore, a more flex­i­ble and di­ver­si­fied fi­nanc­ing sys­tem is needed for re­new­able en­ergy,” said Qu.

Ac­cord­ing toare­portby IRENA re­leased in June, the av­er­age costs of pho­to­voltaic power are go­ing to drop by 59 per­cent by 2025, com­pared with the 2015 price of $0.5 per kilo­watt.

Oceanic and land wind power costs are ex­pected to go down by 35 and 25 per­cent re­spec­tively by 2025, ac­cord­ing to IRENA.

China has pledged to in­crease its share of non-fossil fu­els in pri­mary en­ergy con­sump­tion from 12 per­cent in 2015 to 15 per­cent by 2020 and 20 per­cent in 2030.

In order to achieve this goal, the wind and pho­to­voltaic in­te­gra­tion into the na­tional grid would need to be at least 400 mil­lion kilo­watts in 2020 and 1 bil­lion kilo­watts in 2030.

A more flex­i­ble and di­ver­si­fied fi­nanc­ing sys­tem is needed for re­new­able en­ergy.” pres­i­dent of Cana­dian So­lar Inc China’s to­tal in­vest­ment in re­new­able en­ergy last year

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