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Data: First Half 2016 Power Plant Utilization Hours Published
The NEA published the first half of 2016 utilization hours for power plants at the 6MW and above installed capacity. Average utilization hours for all power plants was 1,797 hours, a decrease by 137 hours (about 7%) from 2015 levels in the same time period. The table below summarizes the total installed capacity and utilization hours for the first half of 2016 and change relative to 2015 levels. (NEA CN)
While the average decreased, the utilization hours per province varies greatly. Yunnan and Sichuan provinces, for example, were at 1,441 and 1,377 hours, respectively. Due to the major difficulties integrated wind, lower user demand, and lack of sufficient transmission capacity, Xinjiang, Gansu, Jilin, and Ningxia provinces all had less than 680 utilization hours. Gansu is aware of this situation and, as discussed later, is attempting to increase utilization hours with a storage plant solution.
Table: First Half 2016 Utilization Hours for 6MW+ Power Plants
Data: 2016 Coal Reduction Reforms Announced
The NDRC announced ongoing coal power consumption reduction reforms. Originally announced in 2013, coal power consumption has been reduced by about 3% annually. The goal of the policy is to shift the industry to renewable energy in a way that maintains profitability of the previous coal plants, while at the same time allowing for a slowing down and eventual reversal of air pollution. The worst air pollution areas currently are Baoding, Yantai, Hengshui, Tangshan, Zhengzhou, Jinan, Handan, Shijiazhuang, Langfang, and Luoyang City. (NDRC CN)
Coal Air Pollution Political Cartoon
Data: First Half 2016 Jilin Province Consumption Levels Published
Jilin announced its first half 2016 energy consumption data by industry. Secondary industry, which constitutes manufacturing finished goods, comprises the bulk of the energy consumption and saw a 4.6% decrease from 2015 levels. All other levels grew between 5% to 12.5%, as shown in the table below. (Jilin Gov CN)
The implication of slightly lower secondary output is to continue monitoring this trend nationwide for a shift from an economy that is still highly dependent on manufacturing finished goods to a consumer and service-based economy where there is a better balance of energy from the tertiary and residential segments.
Table: Jilin Province First Half 2016 Energy Consumption
Source: Jilin Government
Storage: Gansu Province City Plans 1 Billion RMB Wind and Storage Integration Project
Jiuquan City in Gansu Province announced a major energy storage project aimed at reduced wind curtailment rates. The 400MW storage project will cost a projected 1 billion RMB and will increase store and transmit 1.2 TWh of power annually. For context, in 2015 Gansu's total power generation was 122.8 TWh and Wind power generation was 12.7 TWh. Gansu Province is located in Northwest China and has a population of 26 million. (BJX CN)
Jiuquan City is making a bold move, investing in 400 MW of storage. This is one of the largest projects of its kind, and if successful and financially viable, will set a new status quo for wind curtailment mitigation across other regions in China. Azure will closely track the progress of this project.
Policy: Dongbei 2020 Power Supply and Demand Roadmap Announced
The NEA published a roadmap for electricity coordination and development in Dongbei. The highlight of the report includes increasing utilization hours of wind power by decreasing wind curtailment. Additionally, the plan calls for higher thermal utilization hours, presumably through fewer plants being utilized at a higher capacity. (NEA CN)
Transmission Power Lines in Dongbei
Renewables: IMAR January to May 2016 Renewable Data Released
From January to May, Eastern Inner Mongolia renewable power generation reached 7.9 TWh. This figure accounts for a staggering 71% of the regions total electricity sales. Eastern IMAR plans call for 8 TWh of wind and 9 TWh of solar annually produced and sold. (CEC CN)
Hulun Buir Wind Farm in IMAR
Statistics: China Q1 and Q2 Energy Consumption Data Released
China's total consumption for the first half of 2016 was 2780 TWh, approximately 2.7% higher than the first half of 2015. Additionally, 20 GW of new solar power was installed in the same time period, with 2 GW of the solar power being distributed and/or rooftop solar. (BJX and QQ CN)
China's economy is transitioning, as is the mix of energy sectors. The tertiary and residential electricity sectors are increasing their demand. Moreover, renewables are on an accelerated track. More solar was installed in the first half of 2016 than all of 2015 combined.