CAE in Media


Renewable energy key way forward for green transition

  • Published: Apr 20, 2023
  • Source: ChinaDaily
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Technicians carry out maintenance work on photovoltaic panels at a solar power plant in Yinchuan, Ningxia Hui autonomous region, in March. [Photo/Xinhua]

Proportion of country's clean electricity expected to reach 70 percent of total terminal consumption by 2060

While China has come up with the world's largest power grid, its power sector needs further reform to ensure sufficient power supplies amid the country's green transition, industry experts said.

China's power market, after more than two decades of reform, boasts the world's largest installed capacity — twice that of the United States. However, diversified moves are still necessary to further facilitate the large-scale application of clean energy nationwide, said Shu Yinbiao, president of the International Electrotechnical Commission as well as an academician at the Chinese Academy of Engineering.

The proportion of China's green electrical energy is expected to reach 70 percent of the country's total terminal energy consumption by 2060, compared with its current green electrification rate of 27 percent, which is still 5 percent higher than the global average, Shu said during a high-end power market forum held by the China Electricity Council in Beijing recently.

Transformation of the power sector plays a critical role in facilitating the government's ambition to achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, he said.

The electrification rate refers to the proportion of electricity consumption by all sectors of the national economy and people's daily lives, and its improvement will help reduce pollutants and develop energy utilization efficiency.

China has been vigorously facilitating the replacement of coal and oil with electricity in the fields of industry, transportation, construction and agriculture as well as in rural areas, aiming to build a new type of power system featuring a gradual increase in the proportion of new energy resources and promoting the large-scale optimization of clean power resources.

The National Energy Administration began soliciting public opinion on the development of the country's new type of power system in January. In a blue book released by the administration, it emphasizes the importance of making new energy resources a reliable alternative to their traditional peers.

It also vows to further step up the integrated development of power generation, the grid network and energy storage, in addition to research on clean energy resource evaluation and power prediction technology.

Shu added that non-fossil energy now accounts for around 15 percent of total energy consumption, still a long way from its target of having 80 percent of its total energy mix from non-fossil fuel sources by 2060, according to a high-level policy framework for achieving peak carbon and carbon neutrality published by the State Council, the country's Cabinet.

Shu said more efforts should be made to improve the energy price mechanism as well as accelerate the deep integration of electrification, digitalization and informatization to comprehensively elevate the intelligent and efficient level of terminal energy consumption.

"China has come up with the world's largest clean energy system with record highs in the amount of electricity traded and the number of market players during the past two decades, while the rapid development of the power industry has also facilitated the nationwide application of new energies at the same time," he said.

"For the years to come, it is necessary to strengthen subsidized purchases of new energy sources and come up with incentive policies and market mechanisms to promote a high proportion of new energy consumption and high-level development," he added.