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|Solar power panels being installed on the roof of a house in Đà Nẵng. The central city plans to build the nation’s first solar farm to connect to the grid as the first quarter of 2018. - VNS Photo Minh Vũ|
They say that the project is part of the city’s efforts to develop renewable energy and promote ‘green growth’ in the 2017-18 period.
The farm will be built on 6.7ha of the closed Khánh Sơn Landfill in Liên Chiểu District at a cost of VNĐ112 billion (nearly US$5 million). It will have a capacity of 4.4MWp (megawatts photovoltaic), helping reduce nearly 5,000 tonnes of carbon emissions each year.
According to the Bách Khoa Solar Power Investment and Development JSC, the project owner, the solar farm will supply 7.7 million kWh (kilowatt per hour) per year to the city’s power grid.
In April this year, Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc issued a decision on pricing that aims to encourage the development of solar power projects. The Decision 11/2017/QĐ-TTg, which took effect on June 1, 2017, says the output of solar power projects will be purchased for VNĐ2,086 (9.35 US cent) per kWh (excluding VAT), deemed a profitable rate for investors. The price will be adjusted in line with the VNĐ/USD exchange rate, and will only apply to power grid-connected projects with cell efficiency above 16 per cent or productivity module of over 15 per cent that are able to connect to the grid by June 2019.
Solar power project investors will be eligible for various other incentives, especially support related to land, investment capital and import and corporate income tax.
By the end of July 2017, hundreds of solar projects had been registered in Việt Nam with total capacity of around 17,000 MW.
According to the Foreign Investment Agency under the Ministry of Planning and Investment, only 16 foreign-invested green energy projects were operating in Việt Nam as of the end of 2016, with a total registered capital of $778 million. Of these just 18 per cent were investing in solar power.
In Đà Nẵng, solar panels have been installed in some buildings, generating power for home consumption.
In 2011-15, the city cut 12,000 tonnes of carbon emissions and saved $433,000 by using nanotechnology in its public lighting system.
The city plans to support the installation of solar equipment at health centres and schools, and to fund research on solar technology and management.
Đà Nẵng is said to have great renewable energy potential, with a 90km coastline, 2,000 hours of sunlight per year and an average wind speed of 3m per second.
According to a report prepared by the city’s Industry and Trade Department, around 30 per cent of the city’s population use solar power for water heaters, while around 20 five-star hotels and resorts are using a solar power water heating system.