Nations strive to produce and use clean energy

The excessive use of fossil fuel accelerates global warming and often causes calamitous abnormal climate phenomena to inflict great disasters on humankind in the world. And the gravity of destructivity and damage is getting more serious.

In connection with this, many countries take an active part in the production and use of clean energy by reducing dependence on fossil fuels.

On May 6, Singapore’s first solar power plant with an integrated rainfall collecting system, located in a temporary open ground of about 10 hectares in Tuas, Singapore, was publicly established by Sembcorp, an energy and urban development company.

It is expected that the establishment using rainy weather will annually collect 170 000 cubic metres of water to cool and clean solar panels for their highest performance. Such an amount of water can fill 68 Olympic swimming pools.

The Sembcorp solar power plant with the capacity of 17.6MW can produce energy much enough to supply electric power to about 4 700 households a year.

This has the same effect as planting 150 000 trees, thus reducing about 9 000 tons of carbon dioxide emission every year.

At present, the plant which started operation in the end of last year gives solar energy to the national power grid.

The characteristic of this plant is that it is a highly automated facility to keep and repair and solve technical problems through modern apparatuses including drones and video live broadcast.

In its inaugural ceremony, the minister of state in charge of trade and industry said that this establishment enables Singapore to attain the goal of producing at least 1.5GW of energy until 2025 and 2GW until 2030 by solar power generation.

In recent years, Angola has buckled down to the production of electric power by solar energy on a nationwide scale.

It started the construction of a photovoltaic power plant with the capacity of 188.8MW in Biopio, Benguela Province, in March 2021 and another one with the capacity of 26MW in Lwena, Moxico Province on May 2 this year.

An enterprise of this country is now carrying on the construction plan for seven photovoltaic power plants whose total generating capacity is 370MW.

A hydrogen-powered truck exhibition was held in South Africa on May 6, attracting the attention of people.

The largest hydrogen-powered truck exhibition in the world took place in the presence of South African President Ramaphosa at the Mogalakwena mine in Limpopo, South Africa. The president said in his speech that South Africa can complete the total hydrogen ecosystem—the production, transport and use of hydrogen—by developing hydrogen cars and, at the same time, contribute to global efforts to cope with climate change in the way of building zero-carbon industry.

At present, the world trade scale of green hydrogen, the main component of clean energy, is estimated to be US$300 billion and platinum and palladium (element of platinum group) are used as major catalysts in hydrogen production. South Africa holds 80 percent of world platinum deposits and supplies 40 percent of world demand for platinum and palladium. The price of elements of the platinum group is also soaring up together with the global fuel price.

South Africa which started the development of hydrogen in 2007 has pushed ahead with hydrogen production and transport and fuel cell development for the past 15 years and has come to complete a cyclic hydrogen ecosystem through the development of hydrogen-powered car.

In the future, it plans to produce hydrogen from natural gas in “Fischer-Tropsch” process of the local chemical giant “Sasol” and expand the existing oil pipeline system into hydrogen pipeline system so as to produce and export 500 000 tons of hydrogen, two percent of the global hydrogen demand, every year. In 2030, it will reduce hydrogen production cost to four US dollars per kilogram and increase 20 000 jobs.

The development of renewable energy, which is being activated in many countries over the world to protect nature and environment, is gaining the support and sympathy of the international community.