Vietnam Sustainable Energy Alliance has called upon the government to increase the share of renewable energy in power generation sector and move away from coal-based power technology.
At a recent seminar, the Alliance called upon the Vietnamese government to increase development of renewable energy resources and improve energy security in the country. Nguyen Thu Trang, co-ordinator at Vietnam Sustainable Energy Alliance (VSEA) said that the government is planning to import more than 52 million tonnes of coal to fire 52 thermal power plants by 2030, including 12 new ones.
Such a move will be detrimental to the vision of energy security and environmental sustainability. Price of coal-based power, which remains less than the price of power from renewable energy sources is one of the major challenges for widespread renewable energy development in Vietnam.
VSEA stated that if environmental costs related to thermal power plants is accounted for the cost of generation will be higher than that from wind and solar power projects.
According to the current national plan, the government plans to increase hydropower capacity from 17,000 MW at present to 21,600 MW by 2020 and 27,800 MW by 2030. Wind energy capacity is envisaged to be increased from current 140 MW to 800 MW by 2020 and 6,000 MW by 2030. The government has set a target to increase installed solar power capacity from current 850 MW to 4,000 MW by the end of this decade and 12,000 MW by the end of next.
Vietnam has also set a target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 8% by 2030 compared to business-as-usual scenario. The government has pledged to increase this target to 25% with international support.