Currently, the peak load and winter demand period has entered the practical stage, and Hunan is about to face the special phase of the winter dry season overlapping with the peak electricity consumption period.
Hunan power grid currently has 3,486 hydropower stations (excluding pumping and storage power stations) with an installed capacity of 15.946 million kilowatts. It ranks third in hydropower installed capacity within the State Grid, accounting for 29.33% of the total installed capacity in the province (as of the early 2023 dispatching calculation).
Last year, Hunan faced consecutive droughts in spring, summer, and winter, with the reservoir energy storage at the beginning of the year being 60% below the normal level. Additionally, this year’s precipitation has been 40% below the average. In response to this challenging situation, under the unified coordination of the provincial flood control and drought resistance command, State Grid Hunan Electric Power Company Ltd. has been providing scientific guidance to power plants for phased reservoir storage since May. Collaborating with water resources departments, comprehensive reservoir storage plans were formulated, and rigorous reservoir water level monitoring has been implemented. Hunan Electric Power Company has successfully completed reservoir storage for 63 key seasonal regulating reservoirs, ensuring a rise instead of a decrease of water levels in core reservoirs. In the autumn, strict water conservation measures were continued, and the energy storage of hydropower remained above 65%. This effort is aimed at ensuring a peak hydropower output of not less than 10 million kilowatts during the winter supply period.
At the same time, Hunan Electric Power Company has established and strengthened data sharing mechanism with the Water Resources Department. A streamlined management approach has been implemented for 3,472 small hydropower stations, achieving comprehensive water data coverage for backbone power stations in key basins. This has significantly enhanced the monitoring capabilities on basins and reservoirs. Collaborating with hydropower companies, the Electric Power Research Institute, Changsha University of Science and Technology, and Central South University, efforts have been made to jointly establish and optimize models for small hydropower watersheds. This ensures the stable and full generation of various types of small hydropower. Under equivalent water conditions, the power generation capacity has been increased by 1 million kilowatts, equivalent to adding a million-kilowatt thermal power plant.