China to install 18GW in 2013

CHINA: China will install and connect to the grid 18GW of wind turbines in 2013, according to Liu Tienan, head of China's National Energy Bureau (NEB).

A project being installed in northern China

Alhough the official wind installation figure for 2012 has not come out yet, industry officials estimate the 18GW objective will be much higher than the actual installations in 2012. It means the sluggish Chinese wind power market will speed up to some extent this year.

Liu, who was speaking at the annual National Energy Conference in Beijing, said the development of new energy and renewable energy sources would be a priority for 2013. This would be predominantly represented by hydroelectric, wind and photovoltaic power generation.

There are signs China's wind power expansion is picking up. According to China Electricity Council, in the first 11 months of 2012, China put 5.77GW new wind farms under construction, down 3.58GW year on year. In the same period, China had 8.22GW wind turbines connected to the grid, down 480MW year on year.

In late November 2012, the NEB added 112 wind projects, totalling 5.21GW, into the list of approved wind power development in the 12th Five-year Plan period (2011-2015). Since 2011, China has approved construction of 53GW wind power projects.

On 20 December 2012, China’s National Development and Reform Commission approved four wind power projects totalling 6.8GW, located in Gansu, Inner Mongolia and Xinjiang.