Ben Tre Province authorities have approved a $160 million USD (3.68 trillion VND) wind power project that will be located in the Thanh Phu District.
The project is being developed by Nexif Energy, an independent power producer in Asia and Australia, that is also the major shareholder of the Coc San Hydropower Project with capacity of 30MW in the northern province of Lao Cai and is developing renewable energy projects with total capacity of 500MW in Vietnam.
The wind power project will be divided in three phases and is expected to generate 250GWh of clean electricity output per year when completed, enough to power more than 50,000 households. The first phase of the project is scheduled to start generating 30 MW of electricity in early 2020. The second phase of the project is planned to begin generating power in the fourth quarter of 2020 and the third phase will be start in the third quarter of 2022.
According to Energypedia, Vietnam’s wind energy potential is quite high compared to neighbor countries Cambodia, Laos and Thailand. Vietnam has more than 3,000 km of coastal zones and considerable potential for harnessing its wind resources. The provinces with the most promising wind potentials include Bac Lieu, Ben Tre, Binh Thuan, Ca Mau, the Central Highlands, Ninh Thuan, Soc Trans and Vung Tau.
The World Bank ESMAP’s Renewable Energy Resource Mapping Initiative and the Government of Vietnam have collaborated to carry out wind mapping exercises for Vietnam, and their research shows that the total technical potential for wind power development in Vietnam to be 24GW, enough energy to power 5 million households.
According to government statistics, there are more than 1,500 wind power projects online or in development across the country. The water from the central province of Binh Thuan to the southernmost province of Ca Mau – especially the area 300km from the shore – has wind speed of 7-11km per hour on average, making it one of the areas with the highest potential of generating electricity from wind energy in the world.
According to Dr. Du Van Toan, a leading Vietnamese energy expert, this high potential should push Vietnam to establish a wind energy development strategy that includes developing wind power construction on the sea. Dr. Toan said, “We will be able to further develop the economy if we know how to utilise wind power resources together with other sources of power such as solar power, wave power, ocean thermal energy conversion, as well as biomass energy, aquaculture and aquatic conservation.”