Tag Archives: China

IRENA and State Grid Corporation of China Team-Up to Expand Regional Renewable Capacities

Technical experts from SGCC to support IRENA’s activities in Africa, Central America and Southeast Asia

A new agreement signed today between IRENA and the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC) at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP23) in Bonn, Germany will see technical expertise from the world’s largest utility support the Agency work on integrating more renewables into grid systems.

Efforts undertaken by the state-owned enterprise over the past decade have sought to improve its ability to accommodate higher shares of variable renewable energy sources, and this partnership will enable IRENA to leverage the established knowledge of the SGCC for the benefit of developing countries.

China is the world leader in installed renewable energy capacity, having in 2016 added almost half of all new solar capacity worldwide, and also the largest provider of renewable energy jobs, with the latest figures showing 3.64 million people are working in the Chinese renewables sector. The country’s knowledge in grid integration can be useful for other countries undertaking ambitious plans to scale-up the share of renewables in the power mix, particularly in Africa, Central America and South East Asia.

Under the agreement, technical experts from SGCC will be seconded to IRENA for one year. The experts will work closely with IRENA’s programmatic teams, particularly on IRENA’s Clean Energy Corridor initiatives in Africa, Central America and Southeast Asia, and capacity building activities related to integrating renewables into electricity systems.

The agreement follows a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed between the organisationsin June to increase the integration of high shares of wind and solar, grid integration, interconnection and smart grids. The MOU also strengthens cooperation related to IRENA’s Clean Energy Corridor initiatives.

An Ancient Route Renewed

China’s Belt and Road Initiative revives history for modern trade, development and renewable energy across Asia

Stretching thousands of kilometres, across mountains and deserts, the Silk Road holds a special place in history. Traversed by Marco Polo and named after one of its most precious goods, the trade route facilitated an exchange of ideas, technology, and animals between East and West, Asia, Europe and Africa. Though its relevance waned with the opening of sea routes between Asia and Europe, the rebirth of China’s economic power and ambitions over the last decade has rejuvenated the once dormant route.

No longer a winding caravan trail, China’s new Belt and Road Initiative aims to interconnect and bring development, stability, and resource security across 60 countries. At the centre of powering this economic ambition is renewable energy. Continue reading An Ancient Route Renewed

China’s Water Crisis: Renewables Offer Water Stress Solution

Water in China is a big issue.

According to the United Nations, China is home to 21% of the world’s population but contains only 7% of global freshwater supplies. Faced with an imminent water supply challenge, China introduced province-level water use quotas for 2015, 2020 and 2030, targeting improvements in water use efficiency across sectors, and rightly so.

The country’s water tables have dropped roughly one meter per year in the north where nearly half of the people live. The north is also home to more than half of national thermal power generation, four-fifths of coal production and reserves, and nearly half of China’s sown cropland, creating competition for limited water resources. Continue reading China’s Water Crisis: Renewables Offer Water Stress Solution