Wind power now seems to be the best choice for many countries in an effort to switch to renewable energy sources. Wind power is attractive in both economic as well as environmental regards. It delivers not only economic development benefits, but it’s also a safe source for the China’s (and the rest of the world’s) growing appetite for energy. Especially in China, where coal is still a prime source, and some recent fatal accidents at mining facilities makes security a more important parameter. The Chinese Government has identified the development of wind power as one of the key economic growth areas, especilly in times of financial crisis.
China’s targets set in the NDRC (National Development and Reform Commission) Energy Plan (2007) regarding wind capacity could be reached well ahead of its time in 2011 (instead of 2020), and looks likely to surpass even the country’s nuclear power target. The target was set to be 30 000 MW.
The biggest Chinese wind power farm is currently under construction in the north-western province of Gansu, to supply for the city of Jiuquan. Feng Jianshen, Vice Governor of Gansu province, assured that the government supported the NDRC project. It will have an installed capacity of 20 000 MW by 2020, and requires an investment of about 18 billion US $. Wind power station have the shortest amortization time compared to other renewable systems, and that goes also for their energetic amortization . In addition, Mr Feng hoped to strengthen investment in Gansu and regarded it a positive step towards more development.
Steve Saywer, Secretary General of GWEC (Global Wind Energy Council), says China has doubled its capacity for the fourth year in a row (totaling to 12 GW). That makes China, and the USA, the leading markets in terms of new capacity installed.
All this goes in accordance with the Chinese principals of NDRC, where it has been agreed that the need for adaption is more real and urgent to developing countries. Developed countries have agreed to show a commitment to provide financing, technical transfer and capacity building support to developing countries to adapt to climate change.
The potential for renewable generation of power in China is still huge, and its development will be hugely beneficial for all parties involved.