National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and National Energy Administration (NEA) jointly released the renewable electricity consumption quotas for each province in 2021 and the expected targets in 2022 on May 25, as reported by Xinhuanet on May 26. Local energy departments are responsible for promoting and supervising the use of renewable power and should report to NDRC and NEA by the end of February 2022 about the quota completion. The unfinished quotas can be rolled over to the next year or completed through inter-provincial collaborations. Meanwhile, the central government will reward provinces that overfulfill the tasks. In addition, the two authorities indicated that they will publish the quotas and the expected targets for the upcoming year annually, starting in 2021.
Prior to the specific quotas released this time, in 2019, NDRC and NEA established a safeguard mechanism for renewable electricity consumption, which regulates the proportion of renewable energy in power consumption at the provincial level. On top of that, the purpose of the quotas is to achieve the goal of increasing the proportion of non-fossil energy in China’s primary energy use to about 20% by 2025. The renewable electricity quotas include the proportion of renewable energy consumption in total power consumption, as well as the proportion of renewable energy excluding hydropower. According to the released quotas, provinces with strong renewable energy generation capacity face higher requirements for renewable energy consumption. For example, Yunnan, which has the largest hydropower generation capacity in China, needs to achieve the highest renewable energy consumption proportion at 75%. According to the analysis of new energy research institutions, the renewable electricity quotas will accelerate the connection of renewable electricity to the power grid in 2Q21. According to the growth rate of average quotas from 2021 to 2022, it is estimated that the proportion of non-fossil energy in primary energy use in 2025 could reach the 20% goal.