Renewables will cut thermal power use in China’s second-largest city
BEIJING, Sept 1 (Reuters) – Beijing will buy more renewable power as part of the Chinese capital’s efforts to cut air pollution and reduce use of coal-fired power in the government’s proposed regional power-trading scheme, Chinese media reported.
China’s second-largest city, with a population of 22 million people, will cut the amount of thermal power it uses and replace this with renewables, such as solar and wind generation, local media reported, citing a draft statement signed by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC). The volumes involved were not disclosed.
The plan will utilise a new power-trading platform covering Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei province. The Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei cross-boarder proposal was reported in local media last week, with wholesale power contracts expected to begin trading in June 2018, followed by retail trading in 2020.
The draft statement reported by power news website BJX.com.cn on Thursday said that Beijing will push for the platform to be located in the capital and that the city has asked the State Grid Corp of China to publish the cost of delivering the power to ensure low prices for consumers.
Beijing municipal government officers were not available to comment on Friday.
Private companies will also be allowed to distribute power from the new capacity, the BJX website said, with Beijing also planning to secure backing from private investors to build more charging stations for electric vehicles.
The Beijing-Tianjing-Hebei region’s power plants have 104 gigawatts of capacity and 40 percent of its power needs are supplied by other provinces.
BJX.com.cn also said that coal-fired generators larger than 300 MW and which meet environmental standards will be allowed to participate in the new market, with the bar lowered to 200 MW for low-emission generators.
Once the generators are registered, committing to participate for at least three years, all their supplies will be priced by the market, outside of the government’s benchmark price setting, the website added.
(Reporting by Kathy Chen and Josephine Mason; Editing by David Goodman)