In Asia, China's State Grid Corporation has announced that starting in 2016, on-grid pricing for on-shore wind and photovoltaic (PV) power will drop for residential consumers in a bid to attract more consumers into utilizing the smart energy sources.
According to CCTV.com, the state grid corporation believes the rate cuts from 0.02 yuan-per-Kilowatt-Hour (kWh) to 0.1 kWh will result in an increase in consumption of power generated from renewable energy sources.
Renewable energy market
The development comes at a time when the renewable energy market struggles with high production costs and low consumption resulting in vast amounts of energy being lost.
For example 15% of 113 gigawatts generated from wind capacity in the past 12 months ending in November 2015 was wasted due to low regional demand in China’s north-western region.
The grid corporation says it will set the price cuts according to regions with the north-western region pegged as 1st grade due to large amounts of wind and solar power produced in the region for local use.
The corporation will implement additional rate cuts in 2018 ranging from 0.03 kWh to 0.1 kWh.
Smart grid development in China
The initiative follows an announcement made in late November by the Chinese government that it plans to construct power grids in the north-west province of Xinjiang to allow interconnection with the country’s eastern provinces, Pakistan and other Asian countries.
The grid projects will also guarantee power supply for local residents and enterprises in Xinjiang.
According to China's news agency Xinhua, the State Grid Corporation of China will in the next five years allocate 200 billion yuan (US$31 billion) to Xinjiang Electric Power Company for implementation of the project.
The project will include the grid integration of renewable energy and installation of power transmission lines by 2020.
Global energy network
The initiative is in line with China’s plans to build a global energy network to meet global power demand using smart energy technology, as outlined in September 2015 by the Chinese President, Xi Jinping, to the UN Sustainable Development Summit, reported the state-run news agency.
Commenting on the plans, Liu Zhenya, president of the State Grid Corporation, said China will accelerate grid interconnectivity with neighbouring countries such as Russia, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Myanmar, Laos, Nepal and Thailand in the coming decade.
Mr Liu added the state estimates a global energy network will be completed by 2050.