More power plants fuel energy generation
The Ministry of Energy and Mines reports that 50 power plants around the country will generate electricity this year with an installed capacity of almost 6,860MW.
500kV transmission lines carry electricity between Laos and Thailand. (File photo)
The 50 power plants will be able to generate about 30 billion kWh, of which 21,103 billion kWh will be exported and the rest will be supplied to the local grid.
The report noted that Laos has 42 operational power plants with an installed capacity of 6,391MW. They generate about 33,822.4 GWh annually for local consumption and mainly for export.
The 42 power plants include 15 that are managed by the government under EDL and EDL-GEN with an installed capacity of 738.5MW. The other 27 are managed by independent power producers and have an installed capacity of 5,652.45MW.
The number of power plants will increase from 42 to 50 as the government and private energy developers will try to complete the construction of 12 new power plants which will soon start to generate electricity.
These 12 power plants will have a total installed capacity of 468,45MW and will generate electricity at an average of about 1,872.92 GWh per year.
They include the Nam Hinboun hydropower plant, Nam Chae, Nam Ngum 1 expansion project, Xe Kaman Sanxay, Nam Phai, Nam Sim, Nam Nga 2, Nam Ngiep 2C, Nam Peun 2, Xe Katam1-Xe Katam2 and Huay Siet. They are located in the provinces of Khammuan, Vientiane, Attapeu, Xaysomboun, Champassak, Xieng Khuang, Huaphan and Oudomxay.
Currently there are 54 power plants under construction which the government and private energy developers expect to complete by 2020.
Once they are operational, they will have an installed capacity of 6,641.9MW and will generate around 31,680.1 GWh per year.
The report also noted that there are 75 power projects in the process of agreement, including 46 in the Memorandum of Understanding stage. They will have an installed capacity of 10,580MW and be able to generate 28,818.13 GWh per year.
Some 29 other projects have reached the Project Development Agreement stage with an expected installed capacity of 5,112MW and may be able to generate 22,715.88 GWh annually.
The energy sector will be a major contributor to GDP and will undergo considerable growth, with several hydropower plants set to come on line and begin energy generation in the near future.
Laos is aiming for a total installed capacity of about 12,000MW by 2025. The abundant resources of the Mekong River and its tributaries give Laos the potential to produce more than 25,000MW of electricity.
In 1975, only 19,000 families or 3 percent of the total population had access to electricity, but today 91 percent of the population can access the power grid.
By Times Reporters
(Latest Update January 09, 2017)