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  (Source: Clean Technica)

  (Source: China Digital Times)
Will cut the use of coal and carbon emissions

Biomass refinery developer Inbicon is taking baby steps in reducing carbon emissions by utilizing coal steam for cellulosic ethanol. China Energy Conservation and Environmental Group (CECEP), on the other hand, is pummeling coal consumption and carbon emissions with the largest stand-alone building integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) project, which started transmitting power to the to the electric grid on Sunday in Shanghai. 

The new 6.68 megawatt solar station, which cost $23.6 million to build and has the ability to power 12,000 Shanghai homes with 6.3 million kilowatt-hours (kwh) of electricity per year, was built over the recently completed Hongqiao Station, which lies over the Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway line. According to the latest reports, this new solar system can decrease coal consumption by 2,254 tons and also cut carbon emissions by 6,600 tons. 

"The project is another manifestation of China's commitment to reducing carbon emissions to fight climate change," said Yu Hailong, general manager of the project's developer, CECEP. "It comes after the country set a voluntary target of cutting carbon intensity per unit of GDP by 40 to 45 percent by 2020."

This solar station is covered with 20,000 solar panels over the 61,000 sq m roof and has produced 300,000 kwh of power since the operation started two weeks ago. It is meant to spread solar energy awareness as well as the development of environmentally-friendly railways throughout China.

"BIPV technology does not take up extra space, because it is integrated into buildings' design and construction," said Zheng Jian, chief engineer of the Ministry of Railway. "It is especially suitable for China's eastern areas, where there are limited land resources yet greater energy demand."

The solar station built over the high-speed railway in Shanghai is the largest in the world, but not the only project like it in China. The Wuhan Station, a part of the Wuhan-Guangzhou High-Speed Railway, received a similar integrated photovoltaic solar-powered system that was connected to the grid back in May of this year. The difference is that this solar station is about three times smaller than Shanghai's. But this goes to show that China is achieving their goal of spreading the idea of solar-powered stations and implementing them in certain areas to reduce carbon emissions and use of coal. 



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RE: 12,000 Shanghai homes
By nah on 7/22/2010 9:44:33 AM , Rating: 2
a better way of looking at it--

cost 23600000 USD, generation 300000 Kwhrs per 14 days so 6.3 million Kw-hr per year--average cost 3.01 cents per kw-hr---thats much lesser than average costs per kwhr in the US--currently at 5-15 cents http://michaelbluejay.com/electricity/cost.html


RE: 12,000 Shanghai homes
By DanNeely on 7/22/2010 10:18:45 AM , Rating: 2
You might want to check your math.

300,000/14*365 is 7.8M kwh/year.

$23.6M/ 7.8M kwh/year = $3/kwh/year. To get 3 cents/ kwh you'd need to amortize the cost over 100 years which is rather unrealistic. IIRC current generation panels are expected to last 20-30 years, which would give you 10-15c per kwh as a generation cost.

This is also much cheaper than I've seen quoted for large solar installations anywhere else, so I'm a bit suspicious about it. Low labor costs are one possibility, as are unmentioned subsidies, factual errors, or maintenance of the facility being a significant ongoing cost (not a clue about what this would involve).

The site you linked for cost is ambiguous but I think based on what I'm paying and what it lists for my state those are total prices and include charges for distribution, etc. IIRC those are a fairly significant chunk of my bill, but I can't check that from work.


RE: 12,000 Shanghai homes
By nah on 7/22/2010 1:20:16 PM , Rating: 2
You are quite correct--thanks for pointing that out--it really should be 300 cents x 1.3 = 400 cents /25 years = 16 cents per Kwh


RE: 12,000 Shanghai homes
By sleepeeg3 on 7/22/2010 11:25:01 PM , Rating: 2
There are two big financial flaws with using solar power that superficial environmentalists fail to look at, if they even look at the cost. The lifetime operating costs is one of them.

The other one is the capacity factor of nameplate capacity aka "efficiency." Commercial solar power cells only have an average efficiency of around 20%, mainly because they only produce energy when the sun is out. That means you can take that 6.68MW solar plant and reduce it down to 1.34MW. Oops! Your costs just went up another 5x!

Compare this to nuclear power with a capacity factor of 90%+ and lifetime expectancy of 60+ years and you can see why solar is so expensive. Nuclear is actually cheaper than coal now.

If you want to see more metrics, I have plenty... Costs are based on power plants built in each category within the last year. Nuclear is based on the Vogtle Georgia power plant expansion.

Metric Coal
US Total Annual Consumption 29,741,088,949,419
Estimated cost of plant construction / kWh $0.61706
Annual operating costs / kWh $0.03777
Life expectancy of plant 100
Average Annual Costs over 100 years / kWh $0.04394
Average annual operating costs to power US $1,123,320,929,620
Average annual costs over 100 years to power US $1,306,839,928,444
Cost to Convert Entire US Power Industry $18,351,899,882,401
Capacity Factor (Efficiency) of nameplate capacity 74%

Metric Nuclear Power
US Total Annual Consumption 29,741,088,949,419
Estimated cost of plant construction / kWh $0.53152
Annual operating costs / kWh $0.02000
Life expectancy of plant 60
Average Annual Costs over 100 years / kWh $0.02886
Average annual operating costs to power US $594,821,778,988
Average annual costs over 100 years to power US $858,289,121,889
Cost to Convert Entire US Power Industry $15,808,040,574,015
Capacity Factor (Efficiency) of nameplate capacity 90%

Metric Solar Power
US Total Annual Consumption 29,741,088,949,419
Estimated cost of plant construction / kWh $1.61236
Annual operating costs / kWh $0.03000
Life expectancy of plant 25
Average Annual Costs over 100 years / kWh $0.09449
Average annual operating costs to power US $892,232,668,483
Average annual costs over 100 years to power US $2,810,369,096,869
Cost to Convert Entire US Power Industry $47,953,410,709,663
Capacity Factor (Efficiency) of nameplate capacity 20%

Metric Wind Energy
US Total Annual Consumption 29,741,088,949,419
Estimated cost of plant construction / kWh $1.36986
Annual operating costs / kWh $0.02740
Life expectancy of plant 20
Average Annual Costs over 100 years / kWh $0.09589
Average annual operating costs to power US $814,824,354,779
Average annual costs over 100 years to power US $2,851,885,241,725
Cost to Convert Entire US Power Industry $40,741,217,738,930
Capacity Factor (Efficiency) of nameplate capacity 30%


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