Energy for re-generation

CO2 emitted by fired coal from Vinh Tan thermal power plant resulted a clue for wind and solar power projects, especially offshore wind power in the province to calculate the volume of reductions in CO2 emissions based on the project's energy productivity. It is also the roadmap of development to find the strength of coal power, drastically in the direction of green energy and up to now, the shape of the national energy center in Binh Thuan has been more distinct.

Report 1: The right time of Investment in wind power

A Roadmap to 31/10/2021

Wind power project in Tuy Phong district. Photo: N.Lan


Finally, the vessel which carried on 9 wind turbine generators, each with a capacity of 3.3 MW and a tower of 130m high, a 110KV substation and attached electrical equipment ordered by Binh Thuan 2 Renewable Energy Co., Ltd. from a Chinese provider has arrived in Vinh Tan Port, after many delays. Days ago, there were 3 cases of entry positive for Covid-19 at the port, following with the whole province social distancing, the whole vessel was disinfected, the sailors had to be 21 days quarantine on board ... After that, the wind turbines were transported to the 30MW site of wind power under phase 2 of Phong Dien 1 – Binh Thuan project in the commune of Binh Thanh – Tuy Phong. It could go through August, about 2 months later than original schedule but with 9 turbine foundations completed, the installation of turbines ... It shall not take long. It has been being concerned that we are not sure about the quality of goods, as if there was no Covid-19 outbreak, the company shall arrange a team to the factory to survey, inspect and select the satisfactory items but the recent epidemic has forced the company to hire specialist in China to perform this stage, so we are a little bit worrying. If the goods are flawed, not synchronized, the company will not have the chance to turn them back, as the deadline of power connection to the grid is 31/10/2021.

This is a deadline for wind power projects to be connected to the grid and enjoy a Feed-in-Tariff for 20 years (FIT), i.e. 8.5 UScents/kwh for nearshore wind power and 9.8 UScents/kwh for offshore wind power. In the race to enjoy this incentive price, the Department of Industry and Trade of Binh Thuan province leaked out that Binh Thuan has 6 onshore wind projects with a total capacity of 235MW registered for national grid connection before the 31/10/2021 stage. Among them, there are 2 projects in Tuy Phong, which are both constructed at phase 2, including Phong Dien 1 – Binh Thuan 30MW, Thuan Binh Wind Power 25.2MW in Phu Lac Commune; 3 projects in Bac Binh including Thai Hoa wind power 90MW, Thuan Nhien Phong wind power 30MW are in Hoa Thang commune, Hong Phong 1 wind power has 40MW in Hong Phong commune and Ham Cuong 2 wind power has 19.8MW in Ham Cuong commune, Ham Thuan Nam district. By the said Report, despite some delays at some stages due to the covid-19 epidemic such as expert travel, equipment transportation ..., the project owners are trying their best to be on grid before October 31, 2021. In addition to Ham Cuong 2’s entanglement of compensation, Phong Dien 1 - Binh Thuan wind power is also facing with difficulties. As of contract with EVN, phase 2 of Phong Dien 1 will connect to the 110kV wireline of Ninh Phuoc - Tuy Phong - Phan Rí circuit but this line is not yet finished its installation.

According to the Department of Industry and Trade of Binh Thuan, the investor of Phong Dien 1 – Binh Thuan wind power has applied for temporary connection into the circuit 1 of 110kV line of Ninh Phuoc – Tuy Phong – Phan Rí for CoD, a commercial operation certificate before October 31, 2021, where the phase 1 of the project has been grid-reconciled many years ago, but not expect to be powered to the grid as planned. Because this line has been overloaded for the past 2 years, after June 30, 2019, when solar power projects raced to reconcile the grid to enjoy preferential electricity prices of 9.35 US cents/kwh and lasting 20 years. Therefore, when the circuit 2 of 110kV line of Ninh Phuoc – Tuy Phong – Phan Rí is completed, phase 2 of the project will connect to the grid later.

Center of the Wind 

Back in 2008, Phong Dien 1 – Binh Thuan phase 1 started with 20 wind turbines, created a capacity of 30MW in Binh Thanh commune – Tuy Phong district became the first wind power project in Vietnam and with the largest capacity in Southeast Asia. Then, there are only 2 more wind power plants in the province and stopped with no new plants as of low unit rate of sale price and no profitable. Until November 2018, when the Prime Minister issued Decision 39/2018/QD-TTg with the above preferential FIT, increased 15% compared to the previous one, applied to power plants connected to the national grid until October 31, 2021 to attract investors’ attention. A lot of investors, including foreign ones, flocked to Binh Thuan, where is considered as the center of wind, then many wind power projects were formulated but most of them could not participate in this race latter.

According to the analysis of the investors, the root-cause of the issue is that the construction of a wind power plant cannot be as fast as a solar power plant, in addition to losing time to carry out the applications, especially entering into the National Power Plan. Due to the typical characteristics of construction with difficult technical solutions, with all equipment and technology of wind turbines and experts completely dependent on foreign countries, it averagely takes 2 years for nearshore wind power, 3-3.5 years for offshore wind power. While since 2020 till now, the Covid-19 pandemic has been outbroken and prolonged, the transportation of turbines and equipment; the foreign experts are scared to come to Vietnam,... make it last longer, impossible to build the plants in time.

In other scenarios, at the same time with above said issues, the market of equipment and turbines of wind power gave positive signals from the outstanding development of world technology, pushing down the cost of building nearshore wind power projects by 40-70%, offshore wind power decreased by 30% compared to the previous stages. Adding with the superior feature of wind power which is not harmful to the environment; high mobilization of power yield to more than 3,000 Kwh/1MW, while solar power is just over 1,500kwh/1MW; it can run the load of basic consumption to replace for coal thermal power, hydropower ... By all means, it could be affirmed that now is the most suitable time to invest the wind power.

Therefore, even although ministries and sectors currently have many different opinions in extending the time of applying the preferential FIT price mechanism for wind power projects in Decision 39 to the end of December 31, 2023 according to many proposals to stimulate investment, in the province there have been 11 wind power projects, including 3 onshore and 8 offshore, which are proposed by the Provincial People's Committee to add into the National Power Development Plan for the period 2021 - 2030, with a vision to 2045 (PDP VIII). In particular, for 2 mega-scale projects, including Thang Long Offshore Wind, the Provincial People's Committee proposed the Prime Minister and the Ministry of Industry and Trade to soon add into PDP VIII as well as consider to develop the supportive policies and breakthrough mechanisms for offshore wind power in association with Vietnam's marine strategy, thereby creating an attractive investment environment for further projects. In parallel, it recently appeared more wind power off the coast of La Gan with a capacity of up to 3,500MW ...

Only 2 mega-scale projects above, Binh Thuan has nearly 7,000MW, while the draft PDP VIII set out with offshore wind power by 2030 only from 2,000 - 3,000MW. So,  Vietnam Energy Association recently proposed the Government to increase the offshore capacity up to 15,000 - 20,000MW. If based on proposals, wind power projects of province to be proposed to add into PDPVIII, the total capacity shall be more than 15,000MW. So, Binh Thuan province shall become the offshore wind power center of the country. That evokes both curiosity and cynicism, when at the moment all the issues related to that proud name have not yet been appreared in reality.

The Vietnam Energy Association has proposed the Government to increase the target of developing offshore wind power by 2030 from 2,000 - 3,000MW to 15,000 - 20,000 MW. If according to this proposal, offshore wind power projects proposing to supplement the provincial power plan VIII have increased to more than 15,000MW. Binh Thuan has become the offshore wind power center of the country.


Binh Thuan Newspaper