Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Asia: Alternative Energy China - Renewable Energy Revolution?

In a joint press release Greenpeace, the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA) and the Chinese Renewable Energy Association (CREIA) have announced the formation of a partnership to promote wind power in China.

Due to rapid economic growth, China has faced power shortages and a huge increase in energy imports in recent months.

According to Greenpeace, the only long term sustainable solution to China’s energy crisis is through the massive uptake of renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, micro-hydro, modern biomass and geothermal power, which not only provide clean energy but can create local industries and millions of jobs.

“Soaring oil imports, wild fluctuations in international oil prices, the mounting costs of extreme weather events and heightened concern over energy security mean that China’s commitment to renewables at this time is crucial. But this is not a problem for China alone, the whole world has a vested interest in helping China meet its development needs without further destabilising the climate”, warns Yu Jie of Greenpeace.

China is the world's fastest growing consumer of oil.

The Chinese Government has set a target to meet 12 percent of its power generation capacity from renewables by 2020. A significant share of this new capacity will come from wind. In May 2004, the three groups launched the report ‘Wind Force 12 - China’, an industry scenario which showed that by 2020 China is capable of installing 170 GW of wind power.

China’s anticipated entry into the global renewable energy market is expected to have a profound impact on the global industry,” said Li Junfeng, Secretary General of the Chinese Renewable Energy Industry Association.

If China gets as good at producing low cost wind turbines as it is at producing a plethora of other goods expect wind power costs to fall below those of fossil fuels.

"We believe that this law can start a renewable energy revolution in China.”

Let's hope so both for the sake of China and the sake of the world.

Greenpeace Press Release on Wind Power Push for China_