Smart PV: Breathing Life into a Desert Landscape

PVTIME - Huawei's Smart PV (photovoltaic) solution harnesses digital technology to convert solar energy into electricity ultra-efficiently, promote the adoption of clean energy, and create a more sustainable world.

Embracing Clean Energy

In October 2018, the United Nations
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a special report
on the impact of global warming at 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.
The report pointed out that, in contrast to a 2°C increase, limiting
global warming to 1.5°C wouldn't just have clear benefits for people and
natural ecosystems, but also culminate in a sustainable and fairer

The report also emphasized that to limit global warming to 1.5°C, it
will be necessary to achieve "rapid and far-reaching" transformations in
land, energy, industry, and cities. By 2030, global net anthropogenic
carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions must be reduced by about 45 percent compared to 2010 levels, and "net-zero" emissions must be achieved by 2050.

Increasing the use of clean energy, boosting the utilization
efficiency of resources and energy, and developing a greener energy
infrastructure are fundamental to responding to the energy crisis and
climate change.

Turning Crisis into Opportunity

Huawei and Baofeng Group both take a proactive approach to tackling
problems such as energy shortages, pollution, and environmental
destruction. With a belief in the power of technology, the partners are
responding to the global call for clean and efficient energy systems
with practical action.

Historically, Binhe New District on the eastern banks of the Yellow
River in Ningxia forms a harsh ecosystem with sweeping deserts.

In 2014, Baofeng Group began managing 107 square kilometers of
desertified land by planting alfalfa to improve the soil. The company
then began planting goji berries, a business that stretches back 1,000 years in Ningxia. Reviving goji farming has also revived an otherwise dead expanse of desert.

To make full use of the land resources bestowed by nature, Huawei
Smart PV supported Baofeng Group in building a solar power system over
the goji plantation, in effect draping a green blanket over the land.

Smart PV Breathing Life into a Desert Landscape
Smart PV Breathing Life into a Desert Landscape

Goji farming and smart PV technology have integrated in perfect
harmony, creating a rich layer of "edible rubies" topped by a pristine
blue sea of solar cells. It represents a new model of mixed land use
involving two complementary industries: agriculture and PV – a model
that's leading the transformation of goji farming and new energy in the
Ningxia region.

Under the Sun, a Desert Becomes an Oasis

Employee transporting Goji berries in the solar field
Employee transporting Goji berries in the solar field

The planned 1 GWp solar power system will cover a total area of 20
square kilometers. The 640 MW PV power plants that have already been
constructed are connected to the grid, creating the world's largest PV
power plant with smart tracking.

Huawei's smart PV solution adopts world-leading, horizontal
single-axis automatic tracking technology, allowing the solar panels to
track the sun like sunflowers, which in turn greatly improves power
generation compared to traditional PV power plants.

The Story So Far in Stats

The solar power plant can effectively reduce land moisture evaporation by 30%~40%.

The vegetation coverage is increased by 85%, which significantly improves the regional climate.

Baofeng PV Park has generated 3.875 billion kWh of electricity (*since connected to the grid until July 31 2020), reducing CO2 emissions by 1.841 billion kg, the equivalent of planting 80 million trees.

Expected Reductions per Year

Once the project is completed, it will save 557,600 tons of coal, reducing emissions of CO2 by 1.695 million tons, sulfur dioxide (SO2)
by 51,000 tons, nitrogen oxide (NOx) by 26,000 tons, and dust by
462,000 tons each year. This will increase the annual environmental
capacity by about 2.23 million tons for the future growth of the energy
sector in Ningxia.

Although the sun still beats down on this land, the once barren,
endless desert has slowly been transformed into an economic blue ocean,
representing the future and hope – all thanks to time and advances in

Huawei and Baofeng are leading the transformation of goji farming and
new energy in Ningxia, accelerating the development of new
technologies, industries, businesses, and models. This new agriculture +
PV, multiple land use model isn't just bringing new life to Ningxia,
it's forging a new ecosystem where humans and nature coexist
harmoniously, adding an extra shade of green to the world.

Employee at the Baofeng Farm
Employee at the Baofeng Farm

"When I first arrived here, my original vision was to help change
the environment. I didn't expect that the goji-PV project would do that
and also benefit farmers in the area."

— Baofeng Farm employee

Employee at the Baofeng Farm
Employee at the Baofeng Farm

"The land used to be barren, but since we planted goji berries and
solar cells, we have work all year round and our lives are much better
than before."

— Ningxia villager

Powering the World with Sunlight

Huawei's Smart PV solution adopts technology to blanket the desert
with greenery and breathe new life into Ningxia. Huawei and Baofeng will
continue to use the new agriculture + PV model to generate clean energy
and improve the climate of desert regions.

Smart PV Breathing Life into a Desert Landscape
Smart PV Breathing Life into a Desert Landscape

Huawei looks forward to working with more partners globally and taking an active role in reducing reliance on fossil fuels and moving towards renewable energy to help put humanity on the road to resource-saving, environmentally friendly, and low-carbon sustainable development. We will continue to harness the power of technology to develop new practices in response to global climate change and protect the Earth, our home.