BEIJING: Top business, energy and engineering experts shared their insights on opportunities for China’s corporate sector to transition to renewable energy, at the China RE100 Enterprise Capacity Building Workshop this week.
Organized by The Climate Group in partnership with Chinese Renewable Energy Industries Association (CREIA), the workshop was held at an IKEA megastore in Xihongmen, and is the first in a series designed to both improve business understanding of renewables and accelerate market utilization of renewable power in China.
As well as focusing on solar and biomass power in particular, speakers also covered China’s current and upcoming renewable energy policies, case studies on the latest technologies, insight on distributed energy development and business model analysis. The workshop concluded with a visit to the solar panels on the IKEA store’s roof.
Moving to renewables is a smart move for businesses in China, where clean energy markets have had a strong year. According to the China National Renewable Energy Centre (CNREC), the country’s grid-connected wind power was 916 kilowatts (kW) in the first half of 2015. But by the end of June, capacity jumped to 10,553 kW, with year-on-year growth hitting 27.6%.
Solar photovoltaic (PV) power is also growing, with grid-connected capacity reaching 17.8 gigawatts (GW) in March, representing a 68% increase compared with 2014 according to National Energy Administration.
"We cannot deny that the development of renewable energy is most greatly driven by our relatively complete policies about the fixed power price of renewable energy, and all these policies promote the development of the whole power industry", said Gao Hu, Deputy Director, CNREC.
Predicting future energy trends and the outlook for renewable power, Gao Hu said "foreign research results show that the total carbon emissions of China will exceed the total of US, EU and India in 2019; but China may reverse the trend by proposing energy transformation in the 13th Five-Year Plan, and one of the major acts is to develop renewable energy vigorously. The development of the corresponding mechanism design was explicitly stated in the 18th NPC [18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China], and we also proposed the energy production consumption revolution in June last year. Our strategy and deployment next step will be reflected in the 13th Five-Year Plan and long-term planning in the future."
"In order to ensure the proportion of non-fossil energy is no lower than 20% in primary energy in 2030, we need to highlight the development of the wind power and photovoltaic industries in the 13th Five-Year Plan, and 14th Five-Year Plan with faster speed. New energy will dominate the energy field in the future, and the realization progress will be faster."
As a founding partner of RE100 world-leading retailer IKEA continually abides by the sustainable development idea of "benefiting human and the earth", which Wong Xueyao, Retail China Social and Environmental Coordinator, IKEA, touched on when sharing the company’s renewable energy strategy with the participants.
Last year IKEA installed 700,000 solar panels and its generated renewable energy met 42% of the company’s total consumption. IKEA also aims to produce more renewable energy than it uses by 2020.
Wong Xueyao said: "IKEA has 18 large stores in China, including 12 self-owned buildings provided with roof photovoltaic equipment for self-consumption, with the scale ranging from 176 kW to 3.5 megawatts (MW). It is estimated to reach 6 million kWh photovoltaic power generation records at present. The application of renewable energy makes great contributions to reducing the emissions of carbon dioxide."
The operation team of IKEA Xihongmen Store led the attendees the roof to see the solar panels after the seminar, and answered questions proposed by the representatives regarding the basic composition and efficiency of the technology, as well as system monitoring and maintenance.
Liang Zhipeng, Deputy Director General, Department of New and Renewable Energy, National Energy Administration, strongly supports the China RE100 project. He believes "China’s development of renewable energy cannot be separated from the participation and promotion of enterprises. Enterprises are the subject of social innovation and more enterprises with social responsibility are welcome to join this action to highlight the consumption of renewable energy by the whole society; in this point of view, this project of The Climate Group will be as significant as national policies."
RE100 is a global initiative to engage, showcase and support influential companies committed to 100% renewable power. The RE100 China capacity building program was launched in Beijing in July, led by The Climate Group in partnership with CREIA, to encourage companies in China to increase their targets for using renewable energy, with a view to joining the RE100 global campaign and setting 100% goals in the future.
Changhua Wu, Greater China Director, The Climate Group, said: "China highly promotes the development and utilization of renewable energy by promulgating a series of favorable policies, as green and low carbon development is creating new growth opportunities for the Chinese economy. China RE100 will definitely support China’s low-carbon transition."
Experts such as Gao Liansheng, Chief Engineer, PV Technologies Research Department, China Electronics Engineering Design Institute, Gu Yongliang, Vice Chairman, Suzhou Linyang Group, Li Heping, Deputy General Manager, Huadian Distributed Energy Engineering & Technology Co., Ltd. and Yuan Baorong, Director, Low-carbon Development Research Center of CECEP Consulting, also shared case studies of renewable energy applications.
In addition to global founding partners of RE100, IKEA and Mars Group, representatives from Broad Group, Wumart Group, Goldwind Science & Technology Co., Ltd and Hangzhou Boss Electric Appliance Co., Ltd. – which joined the China RE100 capacity building program – also attended the meeting.
By Jing Wang