China is proposing a $50+ trillion global energy grid. Global Energy Interconnection (GEI), a vision of a world power grid, was outlined by the State Grid Corporation of China (“State Grid”)
It would be based upon a global network of Ultra High Voltage power lines connecting global power generation including massive wind farm at the North Pole and solar power from equatorial areas to energy users around the world.
If renewable generation grows at an annual growth rate of 12.4 percent over the world, then by 2050 renewable energy shall increase to 80 percent of total consumption, realizing clean energy supplement forever and completely solving the dilemmas caused by fossil fuels.
Nextbigfuture also covered in November that China’s coal power generation capacity will grow as much as 19 percent over the next five years even as the world’s biggest energy consumer expands use of non-fossil fuels.
While coal-fired plant capacity will increase, it will still remain below 1,100 gigawatts, National Energy Administration Chief Engineer Han Shui said Monday in a webcast posted on the agency’s website. Non-fossil power will increase 48 percent to about 770 gigawatts over the five-year period through 2020 as total capacity expands by 31 percent to 2,000 gigawatts.
President Xi Jinping’s government is seeking to replace coal with cleaner fuels to help cut pollution that has plagued some of China’s biggest cities including Beijing, Tianjin and Shanghai. The country has said it plans to raise natural gas consumption to 10 percent of its total energy mix by 2020 from around 6 percent now.
The entire idea is contingent on ultra high voltage power transmission lines, thousands of miles operating at more than 1,000 kilovolts AC/800 kilovolts DC. High voltages reduce losses over long distances, and both Russia and Japan already have hundreds (in Russia’s case thousands) of miles of ultra high voltage lines up and running. These pale in comparison to China’s infrastructure; since 2009 China has built nearly 10,000 miles of UHV power lines, with about the same again to come online in the next two years.
The Asia Super Grid is Masayoshi Son’s brainchild. He’s the founder and head of the telecom and Internet giant SoftBank Group’s.
China is investing RMB 600 Billion (approx. USD 88 Billion) into UHV development between 2010 and 2020