President hails launch of hydropower station operations
Aerial photo taken on June 28, 2021 shows the view of the Baihetan Hydropower Station in Southwest China. [Photo/Xinhua]
President Xi Jinping sent a letter on Monday to offer his congratulations on the launch of operations at the first two generating units of Baihetan Hydropower Station, calling for greater contributions to the nation's efforts to peak carbon emissions and attain carbon neutrality.
Being a major project in the west-east power transmission program, the hydropower station is the largest and most technologically challenging hydropower project being constructed in the world, Xi noted in the letter.
The generating units, which each have a capacity of 1 million kilowatts, the largest single-unit capacity in the world, also mark a major breakthrough in China's high-end equipment manufacturing, said Xi.
The station, located across the Jinsha River in Ningnan county of Sichuan province and Qiaojia county of Yunnan province, was developed and constructed by China Three Gorges Corp.
Xi commended the station's constructors for striving for perfection, courageously scaling new heights and displaying selfless dedication.
The station's builders have worked together to overcome difficulties and make contributions to the construction of the major national project, Xi said.
This fully illustrates that socialism is attained with down-to-earth efforts, and the nation must fight for the new era with hard work, he wrote.
Xi said he hoped that all those involved can make coordinated efforts in pushing forward follow-up work at the hydropower station and make a greater contribution to promoting the comprehensive green transformation of socioeconomic development.
Premier Li Keqiang said in an instruction that it is important to adhere to the new development philosophy and always prioritize quality. He called for strengthening the spirit of craftsmanship and stepping up innovation in science and technology.
He called for concrete efforts to carry forward the construction of follow-up projects, as well as in the operation and management of the hydropower station.
Li also highlighted the importance of continuing with aid measures for migrants and scaling up the protection and restoration of the ecosystem at the reservoir areas, as part of efforts to better promote regional coordinated regional development, better ensure national energy security and help improve people's living standards.
The launch of the first generating units at the station was announced by Vice-Premier Han Zheng at a ceremony held via video link on Monday.
Construction of the main body of the station began in July 2017, and it is expected to reach full capacity in July 2022. It is the world's second-largest hydropower station in terms of total installed capacity.
With its clean energy, the station will not only facilitate the economic development of Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces, but also contribute to China's pledge to peak carbon emissions before 2030, said Wei Hanyang, a power market analyst at Bloomberg New Energy Finance.
The hydropower station, when fully in operation, will have a power capacity of about 16 million kilowatts, Wei said. Two ultra-high voltage power delivery cables, including one each for Jiangsu and Zhejiang, will be commissioned in one to two years, he added.
China has a good mastery of hydropower equipment and construction technologies, which is also characterized by their low per-unit costs, he said.