NEWS



22

2022

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11

Cross-border integration Photovoltaic "illuminates" zero-carbon life

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From household distributed photovoltaic power generation systems in villages to centralized photovoltaic power generation systems on the ground in pastoral areas, photovoltaic panels of different sizes are sending the "sunshine dividend" to thousands of households. It is estimated that a photovoltaic panel with an area of 2.58 square meters and a peak power of 550 watts, without considering losses, usually generates 660 degrees of electricity a year, which is equivalent to saving about 215 kilograms of standard coal.

The report of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China proposed to actively and steadily promote carbon peaking and carbon neutrality, based on China's energy resource endowment, adhere to the first establishment and then break, plan to implement the carbon peaking action step by step, further promote the energy revolution, strengthen the clean and efficient use of coal, accelerate the planning and construction of a new energy system, and actively participate in the global governance of climate change.

In September 2020, China clearly put forward the goal of carbon peak and carbon neutrality, kicking off China's "dual carbon" era. This means that China, as a developing country in the world, will complete the reduction of carbon emission intensity and achieve the "dual carbon" goal in global history. In April of this year, photovoltaic power generation has begun to provide a stable energy supply for the communication base station on Mount Everest, saving operating costs while protecting the ecological environment to the limit.

Photovoltaic power generation, a renewable energy power generation technology used in the aerospace field, has gradually expanded to industry, communications, energy, transportation, construction, agriculture and other fields. The relevant person in charge of the National Energy Administration said that household photovoltaics have become an important force for China to achieve the "dual carbon" goal and implement the rural revitalization strategy on schedule.

A new stage of development has arrived. Recently, Zhai Qing, member of the leading party group and vice minister of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, said that carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP in 2021 fell by 34.4% compared with 2012, and the proportion of coal in primary energy consumption fell from 68.5% to 56%. The scale of renewable energy development and utilization, and the production and sales of new energy vehicles.

As the main force of new energy development, the development prospects of the photovoltaic industry are broader, and it is "illuminating" the infinite possibilities of zero-carbon life in the future.

Green entrepreneurship breaks the wave

Many people who were involved in the photovoltaic industry in the early days are now called "green entrepreneurs", and they have witnessed the transformation of China's photovoltaic industry from raw materials, equipment and markets to the basic localization of the industrial chain, and the increase in output and installed capacity.

According to data released by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, in 2021, the output of polysilicon, silicon wafers, cells and modules in the main links of China's photovoltaic industry chain will reach 506,000 tons, 226.6 GW, 197.9 GW and 181.8 GW respectively, accounting for more than 70% of the global output; The new installed capacity of photovoltaics was 54.88 GW, ranking first in the world for nine consecutive years.

However, China's photovoltaic industry has reached this step with twists and turns. He Jie, director of the Shenzhen Local Financial Supervision Administration and researcher of the Financial Research Center of the State Council Counsellors' Office, described the development stage of the domestic photovoltaic industry in the past 20 years with "start, adjustment, recovery and rise".

In 2007, a group of domestic photovoltaic companies that grew up promoted the rapid growth of China's photovoltaic manufacturing industry, and Wuxi Suntech, which became a typical case, was among them. Also in 2007, China's annual solar cell production exceeded Japan for the first time and became a solar cell manufacturing country. Since then, the photovoltaic industry has continued to increase production and capacity. According to data, in 2010, there were 4 Chinese companies among the top five photovoltaic cell manufacturers, and 3 Chinese companies among the top five photovoltaic module manufacturers.

However, since 2011, with the shrinkage of the European market, Europe and the United States launched anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigations against Chinese photovoltaic companies, and China's photovoltaic industry has been seriously impacted one after another, and a number of photovoltaic companies have entered an adjustment period.

Later, when many scholars reviewed the development process of China's photovoltaic industry, they were deeply impressed by the demise of some enterprises during the adjustment period. In He Jie's view, this is a common phenomenon in the shock period of the life cycle of emerging industries, and for most enterprises in emerging industries, it is necessary to focus on handling the relationship between product innovation and process innovation during the industrial shock period to ensure that they have production efficiency advantages in leading design products. For the outstanding enterprises, special attention should be paid to strengthening the main business and doing a good job in cash flow management in business decisions.

He Jie also analyzed the role of industrial policy in the process of industrial development, and believed that when the market fails, industrial policy should be active, but it is also necessary to establish a corresponding exit mechanism, reasonably determine the exit time of industrial policy, and scientifically grasp the exit rhythm.

In fact, industrial policies, which have attracted much attention from practitioners and scholars, are also in the process of "crossing the river by feeling the stones". Wei Zheng, who is engaged in research on energy economics and enterprise management, once analyzed the policy opportunities brought by the crisis, and after PV companies suffered a cold winter, the four departments of the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the Ministry of Commerce and the National Energy Administration launched a package to help PV companies "survive the winter" at the end of October 2012.

In view of the problem of overcapacity at that time, the government also made timely adjustments and plans. Meng Xiangan, former vice president of the China Renewable Energy Society, once referred to the relevant policy as a "one dozen and one pull" policy in an interview with the media, believing that "fighting" is overcapacity, and "pulling" is opening up the domestic market.

Photovoltaic poverty alleviation helps the cultivation of the domestic market

The stimulation of relevant industrial policies has increased the heat of the domestic photovoltaic market. 10 years ago, a major problem in front of practitioners in the photovoltaic industry was to stimulate domestic market demand. Wei Zheng analyzed that although China's photovoltaic product production capacity was close to half of the global production capacity at that time, the domestic market still had not been fully launched.

The photovoltaic poverty alleviation project that began to be implemented at the national level in 2014 undoubtedly provided assistance for the cultivation of the domestic photovoltaic market. In the engineering work plan jointly formulated by the National Energy Administration and the State Council Poverty Alleviation Office, photovoltaic poverty alleviation was defined as a new way of poverty alleviation and a new field for expanding the photovoltaic market, "with obvious industrial driving and social benefits".

Previously, many domestic departments have successively issued a series of photovoltaic policy rules, proposing solutions to various bottlenecks in industrial development, and some comments have said that the environment conducive to the development of the domestic market has gradually formed.

After the implementation of the photovoltaic poverty alleviation project, dark blue photovoltaic panels appeared on hillsides, wastelands and villages. At that time, one of the first pilot provinces of the project, Shanxi, gradually built a photovoltaic power station in the southern Jinnan area, photovoltaic panels were laid on the southern barren slope of Zhongtiao Mountain in the north of Ruicheng County, and the slogan "Invite the sun, light up Ruicheng" for a time can be seen everywhere in the local area.

Also "illuminated" is the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, located in the northwestern interior. Some people call the photovoltaic power station developed on the local desert beach "blue ocean", thanks to the "agricultural and solar complementarity", the sharing model of "power generation above, wolfberries planted below" provides many people with a new way out of employment.

With the gradual launch of the domestic photovoltaic market, the relevant technologies of the photovoltaic industry have also ushered in upgrades, the cost of photovoltaic power generation has been continuously reduced, and the economy has gradually emerged. Two years ago, some scholars studied the levelized cost of centralized photovoltaic power generation in the west and distributed photovoltaic power generation in the east, and found that when considering the cost of transmission and transformation, the cost of the two is comparable, and the comprehensive cost of electricity is 0.29-0.37 yuan and 0.36-0.46 yuan, respectively, which has basically reached the standard of unsubsidized benchmark electricity price parity.

In fact, since China's new energy entered the stage of parity and no subsidies on the grid in 2021, photovoltaic power generation projects are accelerating their integration into the power market. It was also this year that China proposed to deepen the reform of the power system and build a new power system with new energy as the main body.

In the pilot list of rooftop distributed photovoltaic development in the whole county (city, district) announced in September 2021, 8 districts and counties in Xuzhou, the old industrial base, are among them. According to the staff of State Grid Jiangsu Electric Power Co., Ltd., the "Photovoltaic Xuzhou" project is using local large-scale industrial parks, commercial complexes, public buildings and residential areas and other rooftop resources to promote distributed rooftop photovoltaic power generation projects.

Li Chuangjun, director of the Department of New and Renewable Energy of the National Energy Administration, mentioned in his interpretation of the "Implementation Plan on Promoting the High-quality Development of New Energy in the New Era" issued this year that one of the problems facing the current new energy development is that the mechanism for participating in electricity market transactions is not perfect, "to promote the large-scale, high-proportion, market-oriented and sustainable high-quality development of new energy", and the market-oriented development in which the market-oriented development has changed from subsidy-supported development to affordable development, and from policy-driven development to market-driven development.