Con Dao looks to meet power demand generated by tourism growth

11:05 | 01/08/2019 Energy

(VEN) - The fast growing tourism sector of Con Dao Island off the coast of Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province is putting great pressure on the local infrastructure, especially power supply.

con dao looks to meet power demand generated by tourism growth
Solar power panels in Con Dao

According to the Economic Department of Con Dao District, there are nearly 30 hotels, resorts and other types of tourism accommodation on the island. In 2018, the district welcomed over 280,000 visitors, and in the first five months of 2019, an average of 2,000 a day.

The strong growth of local tourism has a positive impact on socioeconomic development and is a major motivating force for the restoration and promotion of the island’s historic value, as well as an investment attraction. However, the surge in the number of travelers is also putting pressure on the local infrastructure and power supply for the island.

Representatives of the Ba Ria-Vung Tau Power Company say demand in the district has grown rapidly, from 16 million kWh in 2017 to 19.45 million kWh last year. In the first five months of this year, the commercial power volume saw a year on year rise of 25 percent and is estimated to reach 23 million kWh for the whole year.

The local power sector acknowledged that in late May 2019, the maximum power output on Con Dao hit 3,850kW and the highest volume reached 75,250kWh. The high power demand resulted in high capacity operations of diesel-fueled electrical generators.

According to the Southern Power Corporation (EVN SPC), major investments have been made in recent years in the local power grid to ensure sufficient power supplies for economic and tourism development in Con Dao. In 2017, EVN SPC installed two 1,500kWh power generating sets and two transformer stations at An Hoi Power plant at a total investment of VND50 billion, which helped increase the plant’s total capacity from 8.56MW to 9.8MW. By 2020, the power sector plans to raise total investment capital in the district’s solar power projects to VND80 billion and increase total capacity of these projects to 3,000Kwp, contributing significantly to the power supply of Con Dao.

According to Nguyen Van Giap, Director of the Ba Ria-Vung Tau Power Company, the company has coated bare electrical wires for the 22kV power grid, including 54.88km of medium voltage grid; 24.8km of low voltage grid; and more than 100 transformer stations. The power system of Con Dao is also to be integrated with resources that are not yet connected to the national grid such as solar and wind power resources.

The company has also worked with local businesses and production facilities on rational electricity consumption as agreed with the power sector, so that it can carry out repair and maintenance work as planned. In order to reduce pressure on the electricity sector, the Con Dao power agencies are also urging customers to use rooftop solar energy systems, and enterprises, hotels, and restaurants to switch off unused electrical equipment at night and during off-peak hours, limit power consumption or use equipment rationally in peak hours to save electricity.

Hoang Son & Dinh Hoang