China triples wind power capacity goal: report

Wind turbines being constucted at a wind farm on the outskirts of Beijing
Wind turbines being constucted at a wind farm on the outskirts of Beijing. China has more than tripled its target for wind power capacity to 100 gigawatts by 2020, likely making it the world's fastest growing market for wind energy technology, state press said

China has more than tripled its target for wind power capacity to 100 gigawatts by 2020, likely making it the world's fastest growing market for wind energy technology, state press said.

China is aiming for an annual growth rate of 20 percent for the foreseeable future, Feng Junshi, an official with the National Energy Administration, told a Beijing conference, according to the China Daily.

The new target for 2020 is up from a goal of 30 gigawatts announced by the government 18 months ago, the report said.

China currently has 12 gigawatts of installed wind power, but that is set to grow to 20 gigawatts by next year, the newspaper said.

"China is powering ahead with no visible signs of slow down," the report quoted Steve Sawyer of the Brussels-based Global Wind Energy Council as saying.

"They intend to become the largest market in the world, very clearly, and they probably will unless things take off in the US again in the relatively near term."

China is currently the fourth largest producer of wind power after the United States, Germany and Spain.

In addition to vast wind power facilities in its arid north and northwest regions, is also actively building off its eastern and southern coasts.

The country is the world's second largest producer, but is struggling to wean itself off its dependency on coal, which is highly polluting and blamed for emitting the that cause global warming.

(c) 2009 AFP

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May 04, 2009
You know, that 100 gigawatts is close to the total energy output of a country like Canada. That's an insane number of Turbines:).

May 04, 2009
Canada is the world's largest producer of hydroelectric power. In 2008, Hydro-Qu├ębec's total installed capacity was 36,429 MW[2], 94% of which is from hydroelectric sources.

May 04, 2009
...just thought I'd throw that in...proud Canadian and all :)

May 04, 2009
Oh definitely. It just bugs me when I hear the NDP and the Greens say stuff like "Canada is one of the largest per capita users of electricity in the world".

First off, they are ignoring *total energy use* (including wood burning, etc) in favour of *total electricity use*, which is a much less telling figure. China's total energy use is tremendous if you include all non-electrical sources of energy (every one of which pollutes like crazy).

Second, Canada has a total installed capacity of only about 120 gigawatts. Compared to the EU or the US or even China and India, that is nothing. Yet they lead us to believe that somehow that 120 gigawatts is a major thing.

This is especially galling because more than 70% of the electricity produced in Canada comes form either hydro or nuclear. That isn't including Wind, Solar, or Geothermal, all of which currently exist, but are, as of yet, nearly negligible.

In the end nearly 3/4 of Canada's electricity is emissions free, meaning that only ~30 gigawatts of energy in Canada is "dirty". That's insanely small, yet we're still treated as if we're major polluters.

May 04, 2009
Interesting, 12GW of installed wind power, thats 12,000 windmills.
Kind of hard to believe.
A quick search on the net shows they planned to have about 5GW by the end of 2010.
100GW is about 100,000 windmills.
This will require building 8,500 windmills a year for the next 10 years.
About 23 a day.
I doubt the world has the capacity to make that many for China, much less the aditional ones needed by Europe, the UK and the USA.

May 05, 2009
FYI, tpb 100GW of wind energy is not necessarily coming from 12,000 windmills. That will suppose that 1 windmill is 1MW. There are 3MW, 4MW, 5MW and bigger capacity windmills today. So that effectively reduces the number of windmills and the daily roll-out figures.

May 05, 2009
abraham_ola: That very point is likely the reason why China has been able to up it's wind generation targets. It knows how many windmills it can build and install during the time period in question, and now it has decided to increase the output of each windmill.

May 10, 2009
How long will it be before someone suggests that widespread windmill use might cause more of the dreaded climate change.

Wait a sec, I just did. :(

May 10, 2009
Climate change? Not really. But environmental damage? Heck yes. Windmills are terrible things. Nowhere near as bad as a coal power plant of course (every one of which should be taken offline as soon as possible. The pollution that comes out of those things is crazy, and I'm not talking about CO2. I hope that I don't live near one:P. I'd much rather live right next to a nuclear plant than a coal one).

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