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Thursday Jun 23

China set to generate a quarter of electricity from Wind Power by 2030


By 2030, China is aiming to generate more than 25% of its electricity from wind power, and this figure is set to rise to 33% if, as a result of power sector reforms it effectively integrates wind into it’s existing power system.

The change is set to spark a general change in the world’s move towards renewable energy, as China currently produces the most greenhouse gas of any country and is the world’s wind energy leader by a fairly large margin. The country’s 145 GW of installed wind capacity last year superseded both America and Europe.

However despite it’s prominent standing as a greenhouse giant, China still produces 70% of its electricity from Coal as of 2015. A key challenge, according to recent research is the integration of wind power into a system that has been traditionally geared towards the consumption of coal.

China currently has regulations put into place that determine high minimum output levels for most of their coal plants, to ensure their profitability. If these requirements were reduced, they would create more flexible generation schedules for coal, thus allowing more space for wind power

Researchers from MIT and Tsinghua University forecast that non-fossil resources could grow well beyond the 20% level that China pledged to attain under the Paris Climate Agreement. Da Zhang, a post-doctorate in MIT’s Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change said this "Renewable energy plays a central role in China's efforts to address climate change and local air quality,"

"China plans to substantially increase the amount of wind electricity capacity in the future, but its utilization and ultimately its contribution to these environmental goals depends on whether or not integration challenges can be solved."

Money is to be spent on upgrading coal power stations in a bid to achieve low emissions, as well as introducing zero-growth in the consumption of coal in key areas of the country. But with coal being a traditional source of energy embedded into Chinese occupations, many workers will pay the price of the “clean energy revolution.”

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