14:07 | 05/06/2018 Industry
(VEN) - Vietnam’s fisheries sector is seeking to expand and develop the use of renewable energy with a dual goal of saving costs and ensuring a safe environment. This new approach will help Vietnamese seafood producers improve their competitiveness and ensure sustainable development.
The issue was at the center of May 11 international conference in Ho Chi Minh City entitled “Integrating aquaculture with renewable energy system, a driving force for renewable energy development in Vietnam”. Nhu Van Can, director of the Department of Aquaculture under the Directorate of Fisheries, told participants that energy plays an important role in aquaculture development and sustainability. The energy cost of raising prawn is estimated at VND50-200 million per hectare per crop, accounting for 10 percent of the total expense.
Renewable energy development will also help maximize space. As aquaculture only uses the water surface area, the space above is free for the installation of solar energy systems.
However, participants at the conference agreed that to develop clean energy sources, additional support mechanisms are required.
Nguyen Phuoc Duc, deputy general director of the Southern Power Corporation (EVNSPC), said the Vietnamese fisheries sector is developing strongly, especially in the Mekong Delta. According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the sector will reach 220,000ha in farming area. To meet the demand for aquaculture, the power sector has to meet a capacity of 6,000MW. “The national grid can ensure power supplies for concentrated shrimp farming areas. However, power supplies to individual households will encounter many difficulties. The development of renewable energy, especially solar energy, will help resolve this issue,” Duc said.
Abundant sunshine and wind make aquaculture farms in the south-central areas ideal for using solar and wind energy in production. However, according to Tran Viet Ngai, Head of the Vietnam Energy Association, the renewable energy in Vietnam has great potential, but due to the poor exploitation, it becomes quite ineffective, especially for the task of aquaculture production. By the end of 2016, renewable energy accounted for less than three percent of the total 42,341MW generated by the country’s electricity system.
Le Van Khe, director of the Ben Tre Department of Industry and Trade, said Mekong Delta localities have their own preferential policies to support the development of renewable energy. However, state support is necessary to establish joint ventures in order to link domestic companies with foreign investors to implement renewable energy projects. However, he added, the energy price in Vietnam remains too low to attract major investors.