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China Moves to Ensure Enough Power Supply in Tibet by 2012

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China Thursday started a project to connect the isolated electricity network in the Tibet Autonomous Region with the rest of the country to help the region meet its power demand.

The power transmission and transformation project will be completed by 2012, and "fundamentally solve the power shortage problem in Tibet," said Liu Kejian, chairman of the Tibet Electric Power Company Ltd, which is under the State Grid Corporation of China.

The power line will stretch 1,774 kilometers in length from neighboring Qinghai Province's capital city Xining to Lhasa in Tibet.

Annual electricity consumption in Tibet is about 1.6 billion kilowatt-hours. Hydro-electric power plants generate 80 percent of its power, but in cold low-water seasons, power supply can fall short of demand by 30 percent, Liu said.

"After the project is completed, the Tibet electricity network will be connected with that of the whole northwestern region of China, and power transmitted from Qinghai will help ease Tibet's shortage problem," he said.

The project will cost 13.9 billion yuan (US$2 billion), most of which will come from the State Grid Corporation of China.

A 750-kv high-voltage alternating current transmission and transformation line will run between Xining and Golmud cities in Qinghai, and a 400-kv high voltage direct current transmission line will connect Golmud with Lhasa.

Liu expected the power line to be able to transmit 4 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity to Tibet between 2013 and 2015, adding that local industries would no longer face power shortages then.

(Xinhua News Agency July 29, 2010)


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