China Wind Power 2011 breaking records once again

The fifth edition of China WindPower (Beijing, 19-21 October) was once again a huge success. The conference and exhibition attracted over 12 000 participants from 30 different countries and offered a line-up of over 100 top level speakers. The exhibition also grew, covering 52,000 m2 of exhibition space profiling more than 600 companies.

GWEC hosted two important delegations in Beijing before and during the conference. Adnan Amin, Director General of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) provided insights into how to promote increased renewables take-up worldwide, and Mauricio Tolmasquim, President of EPE (Energy Research Centre, Brazil) briefed the delegates about opportunities in Brazil’s exciting new market.

International networking sessions were organised to actively facilitate contact between visiting delegations and Chinese business leaders. Norway, Sweden, Brazil and the United Kingdom all presented their home markets, informing Chinese companies about potential business opportunities. The presentations were immediately followed by face-to-face meetings between interested parties.

China WindPower was jointly organised by our Chinese associations (CREIA and CWEA) and GWEC. Join us again next year – China WindPower 2012 will take place from 16-18 October in Beijing!

China seeks to strengthen its position as world’s number one wind nergy player

In the margins of China WindPower 2011, a new Chinese Wind Energy Roadmap was published by the Chinese Energy Research Institute (ERI) with a plan to reach an incredible 1000 GW of wind energy, increasing its share of electricity production to 17 % in China by 2050. This development is in line with the Chinese government’s low carbon development strategy which anticipates some 20 GW of new wind capacity to be installed annually up to 2030 bringing cumulative operational capacity up to 400 GW by 2030.

Meeting the Roadmap’s targets would reduce China’s carbon emissions by 1.5 gigatonnes and create 750 000 new jobs by 2050. Chinese experts anticipate the goal to be feasible because of strong support policy for wind turbines in China. The price of wind farm will continue to drop because of increased turbine efficiency and decreased unit investment costs. Offshore development is also likely to increase significantly in the coming years. The Chinese industry expects to have fully addressed shallow offshore technology by 2020, after which deep offshore demonstration will commence.

Despite China’s leading position and rapid development some important challenges still remain. In particular, grid infrastructure needs to be upgraded and the entire system should be re-assessed to provide maximum flexibility and allow for better integration of wind and other renewable energy sources. The Wind Energy Roadmap anticipates deployment of system storage, grid reinforcement, advanced scheduling and dispatching techniques in place by 2030. The Roadmap sets out several key actions to be accomplished by 2020 including establishing a R&D Fund for renewables, strengthening supply chains especially for offshore transport and installation infrastructure, reforming the power market to achieve market based pricing and putting in place training and a university curriculum for wind energy expertise.

In 2010, China alone contributed to nearly half of the global new wind farm installed capacity. China provides a perfect showcase to demonstrate how renewables are no longer an exclusivity of rich countries; in fact today the non-OECD countries are already driving the growth, with China leading global investment in wind energy, followed by India and Brazil.