November 21, 2019 Read More →

Vietnam’s offshore wind industry on the verge of significant growth

Eco-Business:

Vietnam’s thriving wind energy market is, without doubt, among this year’s biggest success stories for renewables to emerge from Southeast Asia, a region that has long resisted the global trend away from fossil fuels.

With its economy ballooning and its population among the world’s most climate-vulnerable, the country has made great strides to boost wind power to keep pace with soaring energy needs and bring down carbon emissions, introducing more ambitious wind power targets than any other Southeast Asian state and policies that have attracted investors from all over the world.

With foreign capital flows into Vietnam on the rise, the country is forecast to install 1 GW of onshore and offshore wind capacity by 2021, up from the current 327MW, surpassing even Thailand—at present Southeast Asia’s front-runner in installed wind capacity. Vietnam is also the only state in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to have developed offshore wind, with 99 MW already in place.

But it won’t stop there, with the target to deploy a total wind power capacity of 6,000 MW by 2030 enshrined in its latest national power development master plan

In July, the Vietnamese government approved the assessment of the area off the cape of Kê Gà in south Vietnam to build the world’s largest offshore wind farm with a capacity of 3,400 MW. Once completed, the project’s power capacity will outstrip even that of the nation’s largest coal, gas and hydropower stations.

Liming Qiao, Asia director at Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), said with Vietnam’s energy needs acute, the state turned its focus to its 3,300 km coastline, which boasts one of the best resources for both onshore and offshore wind in ASEAN. By tapping into its potential offshore wind capacity alone—an estimated 309 GW—Vietnam could meet its entire energy needs for decades to come. “The government has realised that wind power is a cheap and reliable source of electricity production. Given the soaring electricity demand, this is the most sensible direction to go in,” she said.

More: Gusty growth: Vietnam’s remarkable wind energy story

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