The Republic of China (Taiwan) is heavily dependent on fossil fuels for its electricity production. Coal and gas provide over 80% of the country's electricity, split nearly evenly between the two. Low-carbon energy, on the other hand, makes up just over 16% of the energy mix. Nuclear energy contributes to just over 8% of electricity production while solar, wind, and hydro provide close to 8% combined. Taiwan is self-sustainable in terms of electricity, with no imports or exports from or to other countries.
Looking ahead, Taiwan could significantly increase its low-carbon electricity production by drawing lessons from countries that have been successful in this field. France, for example, generates a whopping 61% of its electricity from nuclear energy. A similar focus on nuclear power could drastically reduce Taiwan's reliance on fossil fuels. The country could also consider bolstering its wind energy production. Denmark generates over half of its electricity through wind energy, a figure that seems achievable for Taiwan considering its significant coastline and potential for offshore wind farms.
The history of low-carbon electricity generation in Taiwan reveals a mixed picture. In the early 1980s, there was a steady increase in nuclear power generation. However, the start of the 21st century witnessed significant fluctuations. There were periods of decline, such as between 2001 and 2002, and more recently, between 2015 and 2022. The country also saw a decline in hydro power generation in 1991 and 2020. Nonetheless, there have been positive developments as well. For example, solar power generation increased in 2022, showing the potential for the country to diversify its energy mix and reduce its dependency on fossil fuels.