MAC/20: Mines and Communities

China Seen Raising its Wind Power Capacity Target

Published by MAC on 2007-05-09

China Seen Raising its Wind Power Capacity Target

PlanetArk ITALY

9th May 2007

MILAN - China is likely to raise its wind power generating capacity target after a boom in the sector, an industry conference was told on Tuesday.

China is set to overshoot a 5 gigawatt target set for wind generation installed capacity in 2010 after it hit 2.6 GW at the end of 2006, experts from the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) and their Chinese colleagues said.

"I think that probably in the next year they will reach the 5 gigawatts and they will increase a lot, to somewhere between 10 and 12 (GW)," GWEC Chairman Arthouros Zervos said on the sidelines of the conference.

Officials from the Chinese wind energy bodies CREIA and CWEA told the international wind power conference in Milan the 5 GW target will be met ahead of schedule and more ambitious targets could be achieved.

Other experts estimated that China will hit the 5 GW target in 2008-2009.

About 1.3 GW of new wind turbines went up last year alone and China plans to reach 30 GW in 2020. Zervos said it was too early to say if China will overshoot the 2020 target too.

The industry operators told the conference it would make sense to switch targets to electricity output from installed capacity, which may differ from real operating capacity.

China should launch a nation-wide payment system to boost wind energy and encourage investment as well technology development, GWEC, CREIA and CWEA said in a joint statement.

They suggested the introduction of a feed-in tariff -- which obliges a grid to buy wind energy from generators at high price -- as a way to boost the sector.

Wind energy in China would get an additional boost from Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) deals -- which allow rich countries earn carbon credits by investing in green energy projects in developing countries under the Kyoto Protocol.

Experts also said China should boost the power transmission network and ensure access to the grid for new wind projects, as well as encourage foreign technological expertise in wind turbine manufacturing.

REUTERS NEWS SERVICE

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