Renewable energy demand and capacity are growing explosively. When looking at numbers for wind energy production, China stands above all other countries.
Figures released by the Global Energy Council in late February showed that China has installed far more wind power capacity, both on land and at sea, than any other country.
China is approaching the end of its 13th Energy Technology Innovation Five-Year Plan, singularityhub.com reported.
The plan specifically mentions wind energy as a focus point, identifying wind turbines with a megawatt production capacity of between 8 and 10MW as a key technology.
By the end of 2020, China aims to have 210 gigawatts of grid-connected wind energy capacity. Its capacity at the beginning of 2018 led the world with around 187 GW, compared to 89 GW for the US in second place and 56 GW for Germany in third.
Wind energy is not the only renewable where China is the pacesetter.
A recent report from the Global Commission on the Geopolitics of Energy Transformation, set up by the International Renewable Energy Agency, pointed to China as the country in the best position to ‘become the world’s renewable energy superpower.’
China is now the world leader in production, export, and installation of solar panels, wind turbines, batteries, and electric vehicles.
It aims to produce 50% of its energy from non-fossil sources, including nuclear and renewable, by 2030.
As a nation, China has many good reasons for focusing on renewables like wind.
For one, the country’s growing middle class is fueling higher energy use. In 2010, China surpassed the US and became the world’s biggest consumer of energy. Investments in renewable energy production are a way of lowering dependence on imports from other countries.
A lot of China’s energy still comes from fossil sources, like coal (60.4% in 2017) and crude oil (18.8% the same year).