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China supplants U.S. as country with most installed wind-power capacity

Feb 13, 2011 - energycentral.com

China installed 16GW of new wind-power capacity in 2010, a 62 percent year-on-year growth rate, taking its total installed capacity to 41.8GW, Li Junfeng, secretary general of Chinese Renewable Energy Industries Association (CREIA), said at the association's annual New Year meeting in Beijing.

The U.S. installed about 5GW of new wind-power capacity in 2010, taking its total installed capacity to 40.2GW, according to the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC).

US investors' confidence in the renewable energy sector suffered because the US failed to enact binding climate change-limiting legislation.

The wind-power capacity installed in China in 2010 will save 31.3 million metric tonnes of coal per year, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by more than 90 million tonnes, suspended particles by nearly 33,000 tonnes, sulfur dioxide by 64,000 tonnes and nitric oxide by 60,000 tonnes.

China's wind power industry has developed by leaps and bounds in recent years, boosted by the promulgation of the Renewable Energy Law in Feb. 2005.

China's cumulative installed wind-power capacity increased by more than 100 percent for five consecutive years.

China will increase cumulative grid-connected installed wind-power capacity to 55GW this year and increase cumulative installed wind-power capacity to 100GW by 2015. By 2020, it plans to have 200GW of installed capacity.

This year, China will start building the second-stage the 5GW wind-power project in Jiuquan in northwest China's Gansu Province; the 2GW wind power project in Hami in northwest China's Xinjiang; the 2GW wind power project in Kailu in north China's Inner Mongolia; and the 1.5GW wind power project in Tongyu in northeast China's Jilin Province.

China will also kick off the building of a 1GW offshore wind-power project in east China's Jiangsu Province. It will accelerate offshore wind-power projects in the eastern coastal provinces of Hebei, Shandong, Zhejiang and Fujian. It will also speed up development of the second-stage of Shanghai's East Sea Bridge offshore wind farm.

The State Council, China's cabinet, is considering a 5-trillion-yuan (758 billion US dollars) emerging energy industrial development plan. If approved, some 1.5 trillion yuan (227 billion US dollars) of investment will flow into the wind-power sector.