Before we jump into China, lets look at just the basics of HOW wind energy works. So here is a neat little animation video of how it works.
Pictures speak a thousand words.
The map above was a study done by Harvard University and Tsinghua University researchers. They combined meteorological and wind-turbine modeling to map China’s wind-energy potential. The potential output of 1.5 MW wind turbines is shown as a percentage of maximum output over time. Credit: Michael McElroy, Harvard University (Source)
We can see the China's market share of all the major players in wind energy, where Sinovel, Goldwind, and Dongfang are leading the nation's wind power. (Source)
- Wind power showed a growth rate of 31.7 %, the highest rate since 2001.
- The wind sector in 2009 had a turnover of 50 billion €.
- The wind sector employed 550,000 people worldwide. In the year 2012, the wind industry is expected for the first time to offer 1 million jobs.
- Asia accounted for the largest share of new installations (40.4 %), followed by North America (28.4 %) and Europe fell back to the third place (27.3 %).
My opinion: Can China move forward with wind? They certainly can, and they will. But they are going to have to import foreign help, and they already have begun to do so. Denmarks's Vestas will open it's fifth factory in China this year, and according to the China Wind and Energy Association (CWEA), General Electric and A-Power have already signed letters of intent to provide 900 wind turbine gearboxes and establish a joint venture to build a wind turbine assembly facility. China, being the most populated country and being the most polluted countries in the world (followed by U.S.), has no choice but to move where the wind blows. For China, it is critical because safe and sustainable development cannot be attained without cleaning up its act. Major companies like Goldwind Science and Technology, Sinovel Windtec Co, Gamesa Corporacion Tecnologica, Vestas Wind Systems, Dongfang Electric Corporation, GE Energy, and Suzlon Energy Limited are investing huge amounts of capital on Wind Power in China. I think that China will be leading the wind energy race next year. What do you think?
Interesting fact: A report release by state media in 2007 estimated that the average life expectancy of Chinese city traffic police is 43 years of age. The primary cause being air pollution.
Some interesting facts about Wind Energy:
- There is evidence that wind energy was used to propel boats along the Nile as early as 5000BC.
- The earliest known windmills were in Persia (Iran) and looked like large paddle wheels.
- In 200BC people in China and the Middle East used windmills to pump water and grind grain.
- The largest wind turbine in the world is in Hawaii. It stands 20 stories high and has rotors the length of a football field.
- Wind is the fastest growing energy source worldwide.
- An average wind speed of 14mph is required to convert wind energy into electricity.