Renewable Energy in Taiwan

Taiwan, once dubbed the “garbage island” due to the waste management crisis it faced in 1994, has suceeded to transform into a prominent actor in recycling and sustainable management on the international stage. It is a major advocator of the renewable energy sector and invests a great deal in the research and development of alternative energy solutions.

The overall generation of electricity in Taiwan increased by nearly 15 percent over the span of ten years between 2008 and 2018. As an economy with limited natural resources, Taiwan majorly relies on importing its energy supply from trade partners such as China, Indonesia, Malaysia and Qatar. Most of the electricity is produced using fossil fuels such as coal and natural gas and a small percentage of nuclear power, although more obsolete fossil fuel production units are being replaced and power generation from nuclear facilities is being reduced. Almost 20 percent of the energy supply is derived from renewable sources with total production of green energy amounting to nearly 11 terawatt hours as of 2017.

As of 2017, Taiwan’s onshore wind energy production totaled a little over 1,700 gigawatt hours (GWh) which mirrored the rising trend in the annual electricity generation from wind power. The island also plans on expanding its wind energy sector to offshore facilities with the aid of European partners who are leaders in the offshore wind harnessing business. The country’s topography makes for conducive conditions to establish advanced offshore wind energy production systems.

In comparison to the wind energy production, the hydro power projects produced higher rates of electricity per annum. However, the electricity generation from hydro power took a dip in 2017 and was valued at approximately 23 billion New Taiwan dollars. But Taiwan has plans of going beyond just wind and hydro power projects.

Taiwan is renowned for its groundbreaking technology used to produce very light solar panels and is the second largest producer of photovoltaic cells. Production values of solar energy peaked in 2017 at nearly 1,700 GWh, and has been proactive in diversifying its energy sources and relied on electricity production through cogeneration. Cogeneration refers to the use of a power station to produce both electricity as well as useful heat simultaneously. The production of bioenergy for the same grossed under 1,900 GWh in 2017.

While nearly 30 percent of the Taiwanese population consent to the payment of a higher price for a clean energy supply, over 40 percent of the public is of the opinion that nuclear power generated electricity should not be entirely discarded in the year 2019. It still remains to be seen whether Taiwan will be able to set up a stable electricity supply using non-conventional energy sources, especially, with a considerable portion of the population harboring doubts about the guarantee provided by the Taiwanese government.

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Taiwan's renewable energy

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Electricity generation from renewable energy

Value of electricity generation from renewable energy

Capacity of renewable energy

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