Shanxi province in north China has taken concrete actions to increase power production from renewable energy sources and achieved remarkable results in replacing coal with clean energy.
Solar energy offers a clean source of power. On the ridge bordering Yungang district and Zuoyun county in Datong, solar panels were glinting in the sunlight, and modular prefabricated substations stood among them, delivering clean energy to distant places.
On a mountain near Shahukou in Youyu county, more than 30 wind turbines rotated continuously under the clear blue sky. With 1,680 hours of effective wind speed each year, they could produce 80 million to 100 million kilowatt-hours of electricity.
In recent years, Shanxi has quickened its steps for energy transformation, giving priority to green and diversified development. Aside from coal power generation, the province has increased photovoltaic (PV) and wind power generating capacities.
As a national energy base, Shanxi has vigorously promoted new energy projects and significantly increased installed capacity of wind power and PV power generation.
Over the past three years, the installed capacity of wind power and solar PV power grew by 16.3% and 70.9% respectively, making wind and solar PV power the second and third largest power sources in the province.
The installed capacity of wind power exceeded 10 million kilowatts. The solar PV power generation capacity in Shanxi reached 4 million kilowatts, ranking first in China.
Shanxi has stepped up the development of wind energy resources, actively promoted the construction of low wind speed projects in central and southern part of the province, and pushed ahead the construction of a 7 million–kilowatt wind power base in the north.
The province is striving to integrate at least 14 million kilowatts of wind power capacity into its power system by 2020.
Moreover, the province has promoted the development of pilot clean heating projects. It plans to bring the capacity of wind power heating units to 600,000 kilowatts and expand the areas covered by clean heating to 1.2 million square meters.
In terms of PV power, Shanxi has applied for approval from the National Energy Administration for construction of national solar PV leading technology bases, in an effort to increase its installed PV power generation capacity to 10 million kilowatts by 2020.
Shanxi has also intensively developed geothermal projects. It has promoted geothermal development projects and technologies, improved geothermal energy development and utilization, and built geothermal heating demonstration zones in Taiyuan, Jinzhong, Xinzhou, Changzhi and Linfen. By 2020, the geothermal heating area in the province will reach 23.6 million square meters.
Additionally, Shanxi has used internet technologies to support the building of a smart system of clean energy. The province adheres to the integrated development of the internet, advanced information technology and energy industry.
It has improved energy internet infrastructure construction, built an intelligent system for energy production and consumption, made the production of renewable energy smarter, and promoted the coordinated development of centralized and distributed energy storage.
Shanxi has advanced the pilot construction of intelligent energy service parks and improved the consumption capacity of green electricity. It encourages new energy power generation enterprises to trade wind and thermal power as a whole with places in and out of the province as a way to boost new energy consumption capacity.
The province has encouraged private sectors to take part in the power transformation projects from coal to electricity. It has also enlarged the proportion of green electricity output to other provinces through existing channels.
Thanks to the effective measures, sustainable development of new energy in Shanxi has shown a strong momentum.
Datong coal mining subsidence area PV base is the country’s first national solar PV leading technology base with a power generation capacity of one million kilowatts. By the end of June, 2018, the project’s power generation had been connected to the grid.
Nowadays, the land and vegetation in the mining subsidence area have been gradually restored, and the environment has been effectively improved. With rows of PV panels shining brightly, the mining subsidence area has become a beautiful landscape in Datong.
Lingqiu county in Datong is home to the largest wind power heating project in China. Put into operation in October 2018, the project has a generation capacity of 400,000 kilowatts
The project could be used as a source of indoor heating for an area of 200,000 square meters in the short run and 800,000 square meters in the long run, directly benefiting 5,513 residents relocated for poverty alleviation.
Shanxi’s first large-scale biological gas project was put into operation in April this year. It is able to process 100,000 mu (about 6,667 hectares) to 200,000 mu of crop straws or 100,000 tons to 150,000 tons of livestock and poultry breeding waste, and produce 14 million cubic meters of biogas, more than 7 million cubic meters of natural gas, more than 40,000 tons of high efficient organic fertilizers and 6 million cubic meters of carbon dioxide.
Tanghuai industrial park in Shanxi has implemented geothermal and clean energy heating projects. In 2018, the park achieved full coverage of clean energy central heating, with an accumulative clean energy heating area of 2.2 million square meters.
Shanxi Shuangliang Renewable Energy Industry Group has utilized the world advanced technology to develop deep geothermal heating, and has built the first and largest geothermal central heating station in China.
Through steadily advancing on the path of sustainable development of new energy, Shanxi is firmly shouldering its historical mission.