The US is willing to share its technology, capital, and policy/technical expertise to help Vietnam in energy transition, Sean M. Lawlor, an energy officer at Econ-ESTH Section from the US Embassy in Vietnam said at a conference held in Hanoi this week.
The conference themed “Strategies & Partnerships to accelerate Vietnam’s energy transition” was jointly organized by Cong Thuong Newspaper and GE Vietnam, one of the first American companies operating in Vietnam in 1993, even before the US embargo was lifted.
“The US initiated the energy switch more than a decade ago and has reported a drop in the use of coal by half, a jump of natural gas to 38% in the country’s energy mix, and clean energy solutions as favored by the government," Sean M. Lawlor said.
He added that the Biden Administration intends to continue these efforts by installing 30GW of Offshore Wind by 2030 and having 40% of power in the national grid come from solar by 2035.
"As a long-term partner of Vietnam, we are also encouraging the government to adopt innovative policy solutions to attract international investment to help the energy transition meet Prime Minister Chinh’s COP26 commitments," Sean M. Lawlor stressed.
Bringing a new perspective on how the transition could be executed effectively, the US Embassy shared their experiences in developing policies regarding the transformation and the potential support they could offer to Vietnam on this journey.
The conference attract experts from the Institute of Energy, the US Agency for International Development and representatives of businesses in the energy field. Photo: Toan Thang
Featuring the acceleration of energy transition for Vietnam, Electricity & Renewable Energy Authority (EREA) focused on exploring an urgent need for the transition and relevant issues during implementation.
“Vietnam is taking its first steps in its transformation from traditional sources of energy to greener, cleaner sources such as gas and renewables as it is an inevitable trend to ensure the development of a sustainable economy. With the new energy expansion, our system is facing emerging challenges of solidity and stability, which asks for both policy and technological approaches to secure a reliable electricity supply,” Hoang Tien Dung, director of EREA highlighted in his opening remarks.
For his part, Narendra Asnani, general manager of Contractual Services Asia, GE Gas Power, said that GE is supporting the Future of Energy, with the accelerated and strategic deployment of renewables and gas as a viable path to make substantive reductions in emissions, while delivering dependable, affordable power.
Energy sources, which are lower in carbon emissions such as gas, further enabled with solutions such as hydrogen and carbon capture, can support Vietnam’s carbon neutral goals, Narendra Asnani said, adding that gas provides the flexibility essential to compensate for the variability of renewable energy-produced electricity, through grid firming.
"With a strong local presence and a commitment to helping grow Vietnam’s economy with the latest energy-efficient technologies, GE has the right solutions and global experience to help Vietnam meet current energy needs while providing a path to continued regional growth," Narendra Asnani stressed.
The shared knowledge and ideas at the conference have proven that the energy transition offered is a must-seize opportunity for Vietnam so as to advance sustainable development. With multilateral cooperation, enabling policy and regulatory frameworks and advanced technology, progress will be accelerated towards sustainable power and economic growth.
Vietnam is currently heavily reliant on coal which fuels around a third of its electricity output. To accelerate its energy transition, Vietnam has plans to significantly reduce coal-fired power to just 9.5% of the total capacity by 2045.
Meanwhile, renewable energy will be increased to 32%. Power sources utilizing low-carbon energy sources will also be substantially developed in an effort to cut down on carbon emissions as much as possible.
Recently, GE secured the first H-Class gas turbine order in Vietnam, providing power generation equipment for PetroVietnam Power Corporation’s Nhon Trach 3&4 Power Plant. This is also the first power plant fueled by LNG in the country that is expected to deliver over 1.6GW of electricity once operational in 2025.
At present, GE generates up to 27% of Vietnam’s power, servicing over 10 power plants and projects. The company has six locations across the country, including a plant which manufactures wind turbine generators and components in Hai Phong, its Phu My gas turbine component repair workshop and a heat recovery steam generator plant in Dung Quat, Quang Ngai.