China

China

CWEA predicts China wind slowdown

CHINA: The annual growth rate of China’s installed wind capacity is set to slow down, said Shi Pengfei, vice-president of China Wind Energy Association (CWEA).

Shi Pengfei, vice-president of China Wind Energy Association
Shi Pengfei, vice-president of China Wind Energy Association

Shi said China’s extensive wind energy capacity and grid restrictions would cause the expected slowdown. However, he said more than 30GW would be installed between 2011-12.

Shi pointed out China’s grid had failed to keep up with the pace of its turbine installations. This is despite the transmission line being updated according to the Medium- and Long-term Plan of Renewable Energy Development issued by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) in 2007.

Now, the grid has become a bottleneck for the expansion of the Chinese wind power industry.

According to the latest CWEA figures, China installed 18.93GW in new wind capacity in 2010, a 37.1 percent rise on 2009.

The country’s overall capacity amounted to 44.73GW by the end of 2010, up 73.3 percent on the previous year. From 2006 through 2009, the growth rate of China’s overall wind installed capacity averaged 113 percent.

The figures mean China has met wind energy targets set the Medium- and Long-term Plan of Renewable Energy plan, 10 years ahead of schedule. The plan aimed to have wind installed capacity of 30GW by the end of 2020.

Shi also questioned China’s plans to develop offshore wind. He said "China must compare the actual costs of offshore wind power development with the costs of sending wind power from the west to the east of China.

"If it costs less to send wind power from Gansu and Xinjiang to the eastern coastal areas, China should give priority to develop western onshore wind energy resources than eastern offshore wind power."

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