China Surpasses Coal with 1.32 Billion Kw of Renewable Capacities

Highlights :

  • China now has an installed renewable energy capacity of 1.32 billion kilowatts, surpassing that of coal-fired power generation.
China Surpasses Coal with 1.32 Billion Kw of Renewable Capacities

China achieved a significant milestone in its renewable energy sector by the end of June this year. Its installed capacity reached an impressive 1.32 billion kilowatts (Kw), surpassing coal-fired thermal power generation. 

This record-breaking capacity accounted for 48.8 percent of the country’s total installed power generation capacity. According to data from the National Energy Administration (NEA), China’s overall installed power generation capacity reached 2.71 billion kilowatts, marking a substantial 10.8 percent growth compared to the previous year.

Breaking down the figures, the installed capacity of various renewable energy sources stood at 418 million kilowatts for hydropower, 389 million kilowatts for wind power, 470 million kilowatts for photovoltaic power, and 43 million kilowatts for biomass power, respectively. These numbers highlight China’s remarkable progress in diversifying its energy mix and embracing cleaner and more sustainable power generation methods.

China is shoring up its position as the world leader in renewable power and potentially outpacing its ambitious energy targets. China is set to double its capacity and produce 1,200 Gigawatts (GW) of energy through wind and solar power by 2025, reaching its 2030 goal five years ahead of time, according to the report by Global Energy Monitor. This entity is a San Francisco-based NGO that tracks operating utility-scale wind and solar farms as well as future projects in the country.

The impressive advancement of China in broadening its non-fossil energy sources can be credited to a diverse array of government policies. These policies encompass generous subsidies that serve as incentives for developers, along with regulations that exert pressure on provincial governments and energy-generating companies. These combined efforts have significantly driven China’s progress toward a cleaner and more sustainable energy landscape.

In a recent development, the leading South Asian nation has successfully commenced the operation of the world’s largest hybrid solar-hydro power plant situated on the Tibetan plateau. Known as Kela, this remarkable plant can generate an impressive 2 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity each year, an amount equivalent to powering over 700,000 households. 

This achievement marks the completion of the initial phase of an ambitious clean energy project in the Yalong River basin. Currently, the power plant boasts a substantial 20-gigawatt (GW) capacity, with projections indicating it will further expand to approximately 50GW by the year 2030.

Being the world’s second-largest economy, China holds the position of the largest greenhouse gas emitter, contributing to half of the global coal consumption. In the year 2020, the President of China, Xi Jinping, made a significant commitment to attain peak CO2 emissions before the year 2030 and to achieve carbon neutrality by the year 2060.

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