Clean or cheap: seeking safe energy options for Vietnam

“The international pressure to reduce coal-fired thermal power is huge,” said an expert involved in the compilation of the draft of national power development plan 8.

Clean or cheap: seeking safe energy options for Vietnam

Looking at the petitions and letters sent by many domestic and international organizations to Vietnamese leaders, one can see that the expert has not overstated the issue.

Organizations in favor of wind and solar power, such as the Vietnam Business Forum (VBF) and the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), criticized the draft national power development plan 8 when they did not see a significant increase in the proportion of renewable energy in the country’s power development plan from now to 2030.

Particularly, offshore wind power is only 2,000MW, while the GWEC wants to raise this figure to 10,000MW. These organizations also asked Vietnam to completely phase out coal-fired thermal power.

In the document submitted to the Government on the approval of the National Power Development Planning for the period of 2021-2030, with a vision to 2045, the proportion of coal-fired thermal power will significantly fall in the power source system compared to the present level, while renewable energy will stagnate, and gas-fueled thermal power will increase.

According to this plan, the total output of coal-fired thermal power by 2030 would be 40,899 MW, accounting for 28.4-31.4% of the total electricity output. Meanwhile, gas-fired thermal power will increase strongly, with a capacity of 27,471-32,271 MW, accounting for 21.1-22.4%.

Notably, by 2045, the proportion of coal-fired thermal power will decrease, accounting for only 15.4-19.4% and gas-fueled thermal power (including LNG) will increase, accounting for 23.5-26.9%.

Thus, the draft national power development plan 8 actually aims to sharply reduce the proportion of coal-fired thermal power in the power system. Since it began drafting the national power development plan 8, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has always strictly adhered to the viewpoint of not investing in new coal-fired thermal power projects.

According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the proportion of coal-fueled thermal power in Vietnam in 2020 was 30.8% and it will be 28.4-31.4% in 2030 (based on installed capacity), similar to the world average (29%) and that of South Korea (30%) at present, and lower than many countries such as China and Indonesia (49%).

Compared to developed countries, the proportion of coal-fueled thermal power in Vietnam is higher but lower than that of many developing countries. The rate of 30.3% of hydroelectricity and 24.6% of wind and solar power in Vietnam is high compared to the world average and of many other countries, but Vietnam has developed renewable energy only for the last 3-4 years.

 

Globally, coal-fired thermal power still accounts for the highest proportion with 29%, followed by gas-fueled thermal power 25%, hydropower 19%, wind and solar power 20%, nuclear power 5%, and others 2%.

If accepting a higher electricity price, the Ministry of Industry and Trade could raise the percentage of renewable energy even higher in the national power development plan 8.

Contrary to the opinion of international organizations, an environmental expert says the percentage of renewable energy given in the draft national power development plan 8 is quite high. He expressed concern that Vietnam will be alone in the developing world if the draft is approved because it tries to follow developed countries. According to the expert, under this draft, electricity prices will be higher than the current ones because investing in coal-fueled thermal power requires 100% commercial loans.

In fact, arranging capital for coal-fueled thermal power projects in the coming time will face many challenges when many major financial institutions in the world have said no to coal power. Meanwhile, financing for renewable energy is much cheaper and more abundant. Therefore, it is difficult to choose to further increase coal or gas-fueled thermal power.

Ha Dang Son, Director of the Center for Energy Research and Green Growth, emphasized the world's current trend is to increase the proportion of renewable energy. Wind, solar, and hydrogen power will be the energy sources of the future. But coal-fueled thermal power will still play an important role and the world will not be able to completely eliminate coal-fueled thermal power overnight.

According to Son, in order to switch from using primary energies (coal, oil) to cleaner forms of energy, Vietnam must research and design its own roadmap of transition.

Luong Bang

Money flows to wind power projects but coal-fired power lacks capital

Money flows to wind power projects but coal-fired power lacks capital

Coal-fired power developers find it increasingly difficult to find capital amid the growing support of renewable energy globally.

Offshore wind power: unpredictable 'waves' as investors wait for decision on tariff

Offshore wind power: unpredictable 'waves' as investors wait for decision on tariff

Many offshore wind power investors are holding their breath waiting for the next move of the Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Government.

 
 

Other News

.
Farmers make modest profits and merchants pocket big money, so who’s to blame?
Farmers make modest profits and merchants pocket big money, so who’s to blame?
FEATUREicon  02/11/2021 

Experts have pointed out that the distribution of benefits in the livestock production chain has become unreasonable. Farmers who make products only earn a modest profit, while most of the money goes to merchants’ pockets.

Domestic violence during the pandemic
Domestic violence during the pandemic
FEATUREicon  01/11/2021 

According to the Center for Research and Scientific Application on Gender-Family-Women- Adolescents, during social distancing, violence against women and girls not only increased in the number of cases but also changed in some aspects.

High taxes and fees cause jump in petrol prices
High taxes and fees cause jump in petrol prices
FEATUREicon  02/11/2021 

Taxes and fees make up nearly 40 percent of the petrol price. The environmental protection tax is now at the ceiling level.

Car importers’ request for lower registration tax worries domestic manufacturers
Car importers’ request for lower registration tax worries domestic manufacturers
FEATUREicon  02/11/2021 

The request for a registration tax cut, if approved, will mostly benefit luxury car buyers.

Hanoi’s proposal to collect fees from cars entering inner city raises concerns
Hanoi’s proposal to collect fees from cars entering inner city raises concerns
FEATUREicon  02/11/2021 

Hanoi is considering setting up 87 toll collection stations in an effort to restrict the number of cars entering the inner city.

PM Pham Minh Chinh's trip to Europe and Vietnam’s responsibility for global issues
PM Pham Minh Chinh's trip to Europe and Vietnam’s responsibility for global issues
FEATUREicon  01/11/2021 

Attendance at COP26 has been a good opportunity for Vietnam to express its views on climate change, and to affirm its determination to contribute responsibly to global efforts.

Vietnamese paintings at international auctions reach milestones
Vietnamese paintings at international auctions reach milestones
FEATUREicon  31/10/2021 

Vietnamese paintings, especially the artworks created by those who studied from the Indochina Fine Arts College, have attracted the attention of the world’s art collectors.

Will students return to school in November?
Will students return to school in November?
FEATUREicon  30/10/2021 

A vaccination campaign for children will be launched in November throughout the country.

Foreign travelers in doubt, though 7-day quarantine requirement has been removed
Foreign travelers in doubt, though 7-day quarantine requirement has been removed
FEATUREicon  30/10/2021 

From November 2021, foreign travelers to Phu Quoc, Khanh Hoa, Quang Nam, Da Nang and Quang Ninh, if testing negative for the coronavirus, will be able to take package tours and not be required to have a 7-day quarantine.

Drinking rainwater, sleeping in buses: the lives of bus drivers, attendants
Drinking rainwater, sleeping in buses: the lives of bus drivers, attendants
FEATUREicon  30/10/2021 

Becoming unemployed and running out of money, bus drivers and bus attendants have had to drink rainwater, and eat and sleep on buses, waiting for the day the bus station resumes operation.

Vietnam needs to consider giving booster shots, though many people are still waiting for second shot
Vietnam needs to consider giving booster shots, though many people are still waiting for second shot
FEATUREicon  01/11/2021 

It’s necessary to think about who should get a booster shot first.

Safe cocoons protect children orphaned by Covid-19
Safe cocoons protect children orphaned by Covid-19
FEATUREicon  29/10/2021 

Most of the 1,500 orphaned COVID-19 youngsters are living in families of freelance workers in HCM City. Without financial or spiritual assistance, the previously limited path to these children's future has become even more bleak. 

Opportunity to build a brand for Vietnam education
Opportunity to build a brand for Vietnam education
FEATUREicon  30/10/2021 

In 2016, Vietnam was the 8th destination but in 2019 the country ranked 4th out of 40 destinations for short-term courses and internships for Australian students in the Indo-Pacific, including regions in Asia, following China, India and Indonesia.

Vietnam auto industry: turning risk into opportunity
Vietnam auto industry: turning risk into opportunity
FEATUREicon  29/10/2021 

The Vietnam Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (VAMA) said the fourth outbreak of the Covid-19 epidemic that began in late April 2021 has forced many automobile manufacturers to reduce capacity or even suspend production.

Hundreds of millions of US dollars invested in Vietnam startups
Hundreds of millions of US dollars invested in Vietnam startups
FEATUREicon  29/10/2021 

Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, many startups in online education, health care and goods delivery have received huge capital from foreign funds.

Parents, experts have different views about reopening schools
Parents, experts have different views about reopening schools
FEATUREicon  29/10/2021 

Students in Hanoi may be able to return to school as the city has been listed as a green zone. However, no final decision has been released.

Petrol price hike puts pressure on consumers, threatens inflation
Petrol price hike puts pressure on consumers, threatens inflation
FEATUREicon  28/10/2021 

The prices of goods and services have begun escalating following a shocking hike in petrol price, reaching a 7-year high, announced by petroleum distributors on October 25.

Vietnamese need to be of the same mindset to overcome current challenges
Vietnamese need to be of the same mindset to overcome current challenges
FEATUREicon  29/10/2021 

The current challenges are unprecedented and Vietnamese people need to share the same mindset to overcome them, according to Nguyen Dinh Cung, an economist.

Should films be sanctioned for employing artists involved in scandals?
Should films be sanctioned for employing artists involved in scandals?
FEATUREicon  28/10/2021 

Filmmakers have reacted to a recent proposal by a NA Deputy to stop screening films or revoke licenses if artists in films commit ethical violations.

Petrol price at historic peak, Government urged to cut environmental protection tax
Petrol price at historic peak, Government urged to cut environmental protection tax
FEATUREicon  27/10/2021 

To force petrol prices down, the Government needs to cut the environmental protection tax rate, which is at the ceiling level.

 
 
 
Leave your comment on an article

OR QUICK LOGIN