Life looks up for villagers in Xinjiang

By Wu Yanbo in Hami, Xinjiang | China Daily | Updated: 2023-11-03 07:19
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The waters in Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region provide habitats for the coexistence of humans, animals and other forms of wildlife. WANG ZHUANGFEI/CHINA DAILY

Xu Hongwei, general manager and deputy Party secretary of State Grid Xinyuan Xinjiang Hami Pumped Storage Co, said that as a result of these factors, work has started on the Hami Pumped Storage Power Station.

"For the grid, a pumped storage power station acts as a 'superpower bank'. When the grid faces high demand, the power station releases water from the reservoir to generate electricity and ensure a stable supply," Xu said.

"During periods of low demand, the power station uses off-peak electricity to pump and store energy. This unique advantage promotes the consumption of new energy, effectively mitigates fluctuations in generating this energy, reduces wind and solar power stoppages, improves the efficiency of generating new energy, and maintains the stable operation of the power grid."

The power station is being built alongside the Sandaogou River in Tianshan township, Yizhou district, Hami. As water will be introduced downstream into the Shichengzi Reservoir, this poses challenges for water protection and maintaining high environmental standards.

"Since the water source for the power station is Hami's primary production and domestic water source, the construction process involves disposing of industrial and domestic wastewater to the highest standards, with additional investment exceeding 100 million yuan ($13.6 million)," Xu said.

Yan Kai, deputy director of the Hami Development and Reform Commission, said, "We are also employing local villagers and herdsmen, promoting grassland restoration, and striving to achieve the green construction goal of protecting source water quality for the extremely arid Hami region.

"Since the project was implemented, vegetation near the power station has increased and improved significantly, and the groundwater level has also risen to some extent."

The power station, which is scheduled to be fully operational in 2028, has a designed annual generation capacity of nearly 1.37 billion kilowatt-hours. This capacity can reduce coal consumption by about 239,000 metric tons and carbon dioxide emissions by 596,000 tons annually, contributing to carbon peak and carbon neutrality goals being achieved.

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