Work has begun on the first of 33 wind generators that will eventually supply
clean energy to the capital and next year's Olympic Games.
There are currently 44 wind power stations nationwide. The newest additions
to the country's wind-power industry will sit on the outskirts of Beijing at
Guanting. They are expected to help reduce the capital city's reliance on
emissions-heavy coal-fired power generators.
The wind-power stations will produce an estimated 100 million kwh of
electricity a year, enough to meet the demands of 100,000 Beijing families.
"Beijing has never had any large windmills before, much less wind-power
stations," said Deng Mao, an official with the energy sources department of the
Beijing municipal development and reform commission. "There are a few rural
households with small windmills. Wind power could arouse people's awareness of
energy conservation and environment protection."
Xue Xing, a researcher with the Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences,
said the station was located in a spot with ideal wind conditions and at the
optimal altitude for wind turbines.
The project will cost an estimated 580 million yuan ($76.7 million).
Electricity generated by wind turbines will cost about 0.7 yuan per kwh, 0.3
yuan more than electricity from a coal-fired plant. The government is
considering a package of subsidies to encourage people to use wind power.
According to the Beijing Electric Power Corporation, the city needs an annual
supply of 60 billion kwh of electricity to meet demand.
Although wind power's contribution is insignificant at the moment, the sector
will cut carbon dioxide emissions by at least 10 million tons per year, said the
The Chinese Olympic Committee wants at least 20 percent of the Olympic venues
to be powered by wind-generated electricity.
"This is the first time we have moved in the direction of large-scale
utilization of wind power," said Cai Xiaozhong, deputy director of the
The project's total installed capacity for wind-power generation is 1.26
million kilowatts, the 10th largest in the world and the third largest in Asia.
"China has the greatest wind power reserves in the world. But the high cost
and China's reliance on imports of equipment have slowed down the development of
wind power," said Huang Yicheng, honorary chairman of the China Energy Research
"The Guanting wind power generation station will offer a new way to ease
Beijing's ever-increasing demand for electricity. "
(China Daily 07/24/2007 page4)