Between 2010 and 2011 five CSP plants with total installed capacity of 343 MW received approval by different national administrations.
According to solar resources, Direct Normal Irradiation (DNI) results in China show that five provinces should be the best options for projects developments: Qinghai, Gansu, Inner Mongolia, Xinjiang and Tibet.
Although due to geographical conditions, slope or proximity to the consumption areas, the results point out that Gansu and Qinghai should be chosen for the first approaches.
Concerning energy policy matters in China, NEA (National Energy Administration) reports to NDRC (National Development and Reform Commission), which is the organism that ultimately determine the policy. In the 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015) on Renewable Energy Development, NDRC has targeted an installed capacity for solar thermal power plants of 1 GW by 2015 and 3 GW by 2020.Currently, five concentrated solar power demonstration projects approved in China by the NDRC are considered as under construction but in a very early stage and developed in the provinces of Qinghai, Gansu, Inner Mongolia and Ningxia. In terms of technology, three of them are parabolic trough and two of them are unknown but with a high probability to be parabolic through.
There are two elements to the compulsory grid connection system in the Renewable Energy Law: All energy generated from renewable sources must be purchased and Utilities must provide grid-connection services (including constructing grid connections) and related technical support. Nevertheless many renewable operators complained about wasting of energy and most important organism in wind energy (CWEA and CEC) pointed out that approximately 30 percent of the wind installed capacity in China is not connected to the Grid.
The 12th FYP also expected to have 11 percent of total energy production provided by non-fossil fuel energy (hydropower, wind power, solar, biogas and nuclear) by 2015 and 15 percent by 2020, from 8.3% in2009 (mainly hydro). Besides, the plan explicitly aims at reduction of carbon dioxide emission and the NDRC has targeted a specific reduction value of 17 percent by 2015.
Between 2010 and 2011 five CSP plants with total installed capacity of 343 MW received approval by different national administrations. The first real bidding process for a CSP project started at the end of 2010 for a 50 MW parabolic trough solar plant in Erdos, Inner Mongolia. Datang, a state-owned enterprise mainly in power generation, won the bidding process with the lowest bidding price of 0.94 RMB/kWh (110 € /MWh) for an operation period of 25 years.
Two of these five projects are currently considered financing by ADB (Asian Development Bank): the 50 MW project of Gansu in Jinta developed by China Huadian Engineering and 50 MW Delingha project in Qinghai developed by China Guandong Nuclear both parabolic trough and probably the first projects which are going to be deployed in the country.
Although the market is still developing, the Chinese CSP business is dominated by the so-called Big 5 Utilities: China Guodian, China Huaneng, China Power Investment, China Datang and China Huadian, and some local equipment receivers suppliers like Himin, Tianruixing or Huiyin.
First European CSP players, like SIEMENS, Schott, Aries or Abengoa, have started to enter the Chinese CSP market.
In terms of Research and Development, the efforts are taken by IEECAS (Institute of Electrical Engineering Chinese Academy of Science) which coordinates the China subsidies on CSP in their platform in Badaling located in the north of Beijing and the Institute is developing the first China 1 MW power tower as well as some other small pilot projects of other technologies.