China to boost rural electricity with small hydro plants
A new three gigawatts of small-scale hydropower plants will boost electricity in China's rural areas within the year.
This was announced by the state media.
As China diversifies its energy mix in an attempt to reduce consumption of fossil fuels, small-scale hydro projects in rural areas will become an evermore important source of electricity, according to the Ministry of Water Resources.
Small-scale hydropower projects, typically smaller than 10 megawatts, are relatively inexpensive and cause
less environmental damage than large-scale facilities such as the Three Gorges Dam, industry expert Liu Liye told Interfax today.
As of the end of 2011, there were some 45,151 hydropower projects with 62 GW of installed capacity operating in China's rural areas, which generated 175.7 terawatt hours of electricity last year.
Roughly half of China's small-scale installed hydro capacity is located in Yunnan, Sichuan, Guangdong and Fujian provinces, said the ministry.