Vietnam Plans To Triple Electricity Generation With Solar, Rare Earth

Vietnam intends to increase the amount of electricity it generates from renewable sources to threefold. This would reportedly push for a 26% increase in household solar energy usage by 2030 and cut the dependence on coal, according to Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

Speaking ahead of the participation of Vietnam in the G7 summit that would reportedly be held from June 8 to 9 in Canada, Phuc reiterated that he hoped the country would utilise its 20 million tonnes of rare earth reserves. He added that Vietnam was blessed with enormous potential for clean renewable energy development and that they wished to help in research and development and the transfer of advanced technologies in mining and in-depth processing of rare earth.

The largest rare earth mine of Vietnam is said to be located in the northern province of Lai Chau, which is near the border with China. And, the metallic minerals are essential for technologies like electric car batteries, solar panels, wind turbines, and smartphones.

In the context of reducing its reliance on coal for electricity generation, Vietnam has been finding ways to promote renewable energy development. And, Phuc stated that according to the Strategy of Renewable Energy Development, Vietnam planned to reduce its use of coal products by 40 million tonnes by 2030. Meanwhile, the country’s hydropower potential has almost been wholly exploited and it is said that the oil and gas reserves are running low. Phuc stated that Vietnam would increase the electricity output generated from renewable sources from around 58 billion kilowatt hours (kWh) in 2015 to around 101 billion kWh by 2020, and 186 billion kWh by 2030.

Vietnam is also trying to increase the use of household solar energy equipment to 12% by 2020 and 26% by 2030. And, Phuc added that it was important that they should not pursue economic growth and the cost of the environment.

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