Low power demand coupled with oversupply of electricity at times have forced authorities to cut the capacity of renewable energy plants in order to avoid overwhelming the national grid, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT).
A large amount of investments from social resources has been poured into developing renewable energy, particularly solar energy, over previous years in Vietnam, according to the ministry.
However, a boom in high-capacity renewable energy projects, mainly in central and southern Vietnam, has overloaded inter-regional transmission lines and caused oversupply at times, the ministry said in Document No 1226/BCT-DTDL sent to the National Assembly’s committees for Science, Technology and Environment, and Economic Affairs and the Office of the Government explaining its stance on the power capacity cut.
Additionally, domestic demand for power has fallen below normal levels due to the impact of COVID-19, which led to an oversupply of electricity during off-peak times such as holidays, weekends, and at noon, the ministry said.
According to the ministry, this is a very dangerous situation that adversely affects the safe operation of the national grid. Though the National Load Dispatch Centre (A0) has reduced the output of traditional energy to the minimum, the oversupply remains, so the centre had to make another cut to renewable energy capacity to prevent the electricity system from collapsing.
The ministry has ordered Vietnam Electricity (EVN) and A0 to calculate the required reduction of capacity at all renewable power plants in a transparent and fair manner, regardless of who their investors are.
The ministry added that it has received government approval on the supplement of various power transmission line projects into planning while urging EVN to fast-track the progress of existing projects to raise the capacity of the national electricity network.