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Asia, Europe, Africa to connect power grids by 2035

By Jing Shuiyu | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2018-03-28 16:58
The 2018 Global Energy Interconnection Conference is held in Beijing, March 28, 2018. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

Asia, Europe and Africa expect to take the lead in connecting their power grids by 2035, according to a report on Wednesday.

According to the first Global Energy Interconnection Backbone Grid Roadmap, 18 main interconnected grids will be gradually established around the globe.

The Global Energy Interconnection Development and Cooperation Organization released the report during the 2018 Global Energy Interconnection Conference, together with several other innovative research findings.

The GEI is a globally interconnected smart grid, with ultrahigh voltage grids as its backbone.

Liu Zhenya, chairman of GEIDCO and the China Electricity Council, said during the conference that the construction of the GEI backbone grid will be carried out in three stages, aiming to connect grids among five continents.

Between 2018 and 2050, the total investment in GEI is estimated to reach about $38 trillion, of which $27 trillion would flow to power generation and the rest of the capital to power grids, according to the report.

By 2050, 177 thousand kilometers of new transmission lines will be added to the backbone grids, with investment totaling $390 billion, the report said.

Liu further stressed the importance of building GEI, saying the innovative technology will change energy development and utilization, as well as provide an ultimate solution to climate change.

Liu called on governments around the globe and companies from all sectors to cooperate to integrate the GEI into the Paris climate agreement, the Belt and Road Initiative and regional development strategies.

António Guterres, secretary-general of the United Nations, said in the congratulatory video that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris climate agreement depend on a transformative approach to energy.

The Global Energy Interconnection Initiative provides a key to solutions that can efficiently use rich and renewable resources, to deliver more than energy services to all, even at long distances, Guterres said.

The two-day conference, with the theme of "GEI from China's Initiative to Global Action", attracted over 800 attendees from more than 30 countries and regions to come to Beijing and discuss the development of the GEI.

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