Articles filed under General from Asia
Environmentalists worldwide have praised China as a leading harnesser of the wind for electricity, but a vice-minister says most of the ventures in the country were "vanity projects" - all for show. Miao Wei , of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, also said on Sunday that one particular project that is backed by the country's top economic planner would have a "fatal result" in five years because of the sand that came with the dry wind.
"The overcapacity in manufacturing is caused by slower growth in wind-farm construction due to power-grid constraints," Dave Dai, an analyst with CLSA Asia Pacific Markets, said by telephone from Hong Kong. "The issues with the grid aren't expected to ease in the near term but should improve with the development of smart-grid investment over time."
China must strictly control the expansion of wind power equipment manufacturing and strengthen its testing and certification work to maintain the healthy development of its wind turbine manufacturing industry, said Shi Lishan, an official with the National Energy Administration, on Wednesday.
In Jiuquan, new coal-fired power plants with 13.6 million kilowatts of installed capacity - the same amount of energy generated by Chile in 2009 - will be added by 2020. The need to add baseload coal-fired power plants has the effect of reducing the clean benefits of wind power. But the local economic planner, Wang Jianxin, chairman of the Jiuquan Development and Reform Commission, says adding more polluting coal-fired power plants is unavoidable if you want to be green. "There's no such thing as a free lunch."
A United Nations climate panel on Friday blocked carbon financing for around 10 Chinese wind farms over concerns about whether they are financially viable without receiving carbon offsets, the panel said. ...The panel's decision on the Chinese wind farms could have serious implications for billions of dollars' worth of wind farm investment in China. The panel said it lacked sufficient information in support of the projects' claims of making additional emissions cuts.
China has received millions of dollars through the CDM, which allows industrialized economies to meet commitments to cut greenhouse gas emissions by paying developing countries to curb their own instead. But environmentalists say some Chinese wind and hydropower projects improperly receive foreign money while failing to show they would not be built anyway, a requirement known as "additionality."
Madakaripura villager Basavaraj's happiness knew no bounds when huge blades were transported to the top of a nearby hillock in 1997. It was here in Chitradurga district that Jindal Aluminium installed the district's first wind turbine generator (WTG). ...But, hopes for a brighter future faded. "Now, the fans are there, the blades are making a racket. The view from my village has changed, but nothing more," he says. The villagers continue using kerosene lamps at night.
A cold front swept across northern China's Inner Mongolia region in early November, forcing a wind energy farm at Xilin Gol to curtail operations - even as a brisk breeze whistled through idle turbine blades. "When that much wind is moving through, the generators can't make electricity," explained Ma Zhanxiang, vice president of the Inner Mongolia Electric Power Industry Association (EPIA). "Money just blows by." ...Inner Mongolia's situation is a clear example. Its installed capacity - 50 gigawatts -- is the country's largest, but the excess at wind farms has reached a crisis level. EPIA counts some 10 gigawatts in the region, including 3.49 gigawatts of wind power, as excess installed capacity.
A Sino-US consortium yesterday announced plans for a US$1.5 billion, 600MW wind farm in Texas, with China supplying all the turbines and most of the funding. The 36,000-acre wind farm ...is a joint venture between state-backed Chinese firm Shenyang Power Group, US wind farm developer Cielo Wind Power and private equity firm US Renewable Energy Group. Most of the funding for the project will come from Chinese banks, with loan guarantees and grants provided by the US federal government's economic stimulus package.
China wants renewable energy like wind to meet 15% of its energy needs by 2020 ...But experts say the country's transmission network currently can't absorb the rate of growth in renewable-energy output. Last year, as much as 30% of wind-power capacity wasn't connected to the grid. As a result, more coal is being burned in existing plants, and new thermal capacity is being built to cover this shortfall in renewable energy.
China, the world's third-largest economy, has made green energy a priority. The country has doubled its capacity for wind-generated power every year for the past four years, and President Hu Jintao pledged last week to turn to more sources of renewable energy in coming years. However, many wind farms have been built far from populated areas or transmission grids, making their output largely useless for now. The China Electricity Council, a national industry group, says 28% of the country's wind power equipment sat idle at the end of 2008.
BP is expanding its wind power electricity generation capacity in the United States but is shedding an Indian unit, which has been sold to Green Infra Limited of India. BP said Green Infra Limited purchased its subsidiary, BP Energy India Private Limited, for a total cash-free, debt-free enterprise value of about $95 million.
The Fiji Electricity Authority has admitted that its $34million Butoni Wind farm in Sigatoka was a failure. And this was because of insufficient study of the area. ...It was also revealed that one of the joint venture partners of the FEA, Pacific Hydro Limited, pulled out in 2003 after seeing the project as financially uneconomical based on its development cost and expected cost of energy generation.
Domestic power majors Suzlon Energy and Tata Power, which have renewable energy projects in Australia, will benefit as that country is implementing a law to ensure 20 per cent of the country's electricity comes from renewable sources by 2020. Sources said the expanded Renewable Energy Target (RET) Bill will be enacted as a law by the Australian Parliament in a few days and will come into force by September 2009.
CLP Holdings Ltd. was granted approval by Hong Kong's government to develop what may be the largest offshore wind farm in Asia by capacity. ...Groups, including the Association for Geoconservation, have said the project will destroy the sea view in the Clearwater Bay area, which they describe as the last piece of pristine wilderness in Hong Kong.
Japan's wind power industry installed 183 megawatts (MW) of capacity in the year ended in March, 2009, down 1.3 percent from a year earlier, a government linked research unit said in a report on Tuesday. Tighter regulations on wind turbines have restricted construction in the past two years.
Suzlon lost sales last year after some blades supplied by the company cracked and customers in the U.S. canceled orders. The replacements for customers will be completed in mid-August, two months behind schedule, the company said today.
Indian wind turbine maker Suzlon Energy Ltd (SUZL.BO) has decided to slash 160 jobs, or more than half of its workforce at a U.S. plant, following a drop in orders, a company spokesman said on Thursday. "There has been a slowdown. There's not enough work to keep all people busy," Vivek Kher said.
The world's fifth largest wind turbine maker, Suzlon Energy, which has been grappling with quality issues with its rotor blades in the US and struggling to repay debt, finds itself in rough weather yet again - this time in its home turf near Pune. Suzlon's attempts to set up the largest wind park in the world at Dhule received a major setback after a group of locals in the region started an agitation demanding more money from the company for the acquired land for the project. ...A company spokesperson said similar "agitations" in the past had forced wind energy projects away from Maharashtra.
He says that by 2020, the US, Europe, China and India will want to have 20% of their power supply from renewables. The issue is about making wind power "cost competitive" with carbon sources, especially coal, which fuels 65% of India's electricity and costs at least a quarter less. "Today wind power is just 1% of supply. It can grow to 7% by 2020. That is the maximum because industry has to find resources, material and execute projects. With greater volumes the price [of wind power] will drop ... and [governments] will ask what is the cost for pollution from carbon fuels. You will need a carbon tax. "