Power Plan VIII to remove more than 14 GW of coal-fired power

Wednesday, Aug 10, 2022 08:59

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) has consulted the Government not to include 14,120 MW of coal-fired power in the national power master plan (PDP8). — Photo ndh.vn

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) has consulted the Government not to include 14,120 MW of coal-fired power in the national power master plan (PDP8) to achieve the goal of net zero emissions by 2050.

Local media consider such a change a “revolution” in the electricity and environment of the country.

The MoIT said in a written report to the Government Standing Committee that of 14,120 MW of coal-fired thermal power, State corporations had invested in 8,420 MW.

Specifically, Electricity of Vietnam was assigned 3,600 MW, including Quang Trach II, Tan Phuoc I and II projects.

The Vietnam Oil and Gas Group has been given 1,980 MW for the Long Phu III project.

Vietnam Coal and Mineral Industries Group has been assigned 2,840 MW, including Cam Pha III, Hai Phong III and Quynh Lap I assignments.

In addition, the BOT project is 4,500 MW, including the Quynh Lap II project, Vung Ang 3, and Long Phu II.

The Quang Ninh III project, with a capacity of 1,200 MW, has not yet been assigned to investors

The ministry believes that legal risks will not appear in projects invested by state-owned corporations while the project development costs incurred by corporations are not large.

Regarding three investment projects - BOT for Vung Ang 3 and the Long Phu II projects - the investors Samsung C&T Company and TATA Company asked to withdraw from the project and were approved.

The new BOT and the Quynh Lap II project were assigned by the Prime Minister to Posco Energy Company to research to develop a plant of 1,200 MW in capacity. However, the company has not been officially designated as an investor.

Posco Energy instead confirmed that it was not researching and developing the Quynh Lap II project as a coal-run plant but proposing to convert the fuel to LNG and increase the project’s capacity. The result will be released according to the Law on Investment under Public Private Partnership provisions, said the MoIT.

The MoIT believes that not putting the above coal and gas thermal power projects in line with the recommendations of localities and investors is no legal risk.

In addition, some expenses of state-owned corporations have been spent to prepare for project investment, which corporations are responsible for handling.

A ministry document said: “The MoIT consults with the Government Standing Committee on removing the above-mentioned unsuitable coal power projects to meet the country’s commitments at COP26."

The ministry also calculated three scenarios of load and power source development. In particular, in the base load scenario, the total capacity of power plants will reach nearly 121,000 MW in 2030 and 284,000 MW in 2045.

In this scenario, coal-fired thermal power will reach almost 37,467 MW, accounting for 31 per cent by 2030. Instead, the aim is to keep the capacity until 2045 at only 13.2 per cent.

Under the high load recovery scenario, the total capacity of power plants is expected to reach more than 134,700 MW in 2030 and 387,875 MW in 2040. Of which, coal-fired power will be 37,467 MW, accounting for 27.8 per cent in 2030 and the remaining will be unchanged until 2040, but then only at 9.7 per cent by 2045.

In addition, in the high-load scenario for operation, the Ministry of Industry and Trade expects the total capacity of power plants to reach 145,930 MW by 2030, of which coal-fired power will account for 25.7 per cent by 2030 and 9.7 per cent by 2045.

Accordingly, the draft power plan VIII is expected to offset 14,000 MW of LNG power in 2030-2045 and focus on strongly developing wind power to compensate for the reduced part of coal power.

Though the reduction of a large amount of coal-fired power capacity proposed by MoIT was seen as significant progress for the country, experts consider that it poses many long-term challenges and the Government needs to continue appropriate strategies to ensure energy security as well as electricity prices.

Dr Ngo Duc Lam, an expert in the electricity industry and former director of the Department of Technical and Environmental Safety from MoIT, told local media: “Coal-fired power is considered the backbone of the economy. This drastic down-regulation of coal power is making a revolution. One of the important milestones promoting the strong transformation is the commitment of the Prime Minister at the COP26 Conference. But what to replace coal-fired power with to ensure security is a tough question.”

Lam said the draft Power Master Plan VIII had to be adjusted for more than a year and has not been completed. — VNS

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