After rushing to connect to the national grid prior to end-June to benefit from price policies, solar power developers have now found that the grid can’t handle the extra capacity. As at June 30, 89 solar power plants had been put into operation and connected to the national grid, according to Electricity of Vietnam (EVN). The total capacity of 4,543MW is, however, far in excess of the 850MW by 2020 envisaged in the country’s power plan. The solar power boom heated up since Prime Ministerial Decision No.11/2017/QD-TTg on mechanisms for encouraging the development of solar energy was issued in 2017. Vietnam is now moving in the same direction as other countries in renewable energy utilization, but limitations remain that the country must consider regarding availability and the cost of electricity produced by renewable energy. Excess capacity Attracted by a feed-in tariff (FiT) of 9.35 US cents for solar power projects, investors have been lining up for approval to generate gigawatts of power in Vietnam’s central and south-central provinces, where solar irradiation is the strongest. The grid, however, is not ready to handle the onslaught, putting renewable energy projects at risk and providing a valuable lesson for planners and latecomers. Solar… Read full this story
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