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World’s Wind Power Parts: Now Made in China

By Stacy Feldman

Jul 21, 2008

Most folks by now know about China’s wind power boom. At the end of 2007, the nation's installed base of wind energy was just over six gigawatts. By the end of 2008, it will climb to ten gigawatts. By 2010, experts predict 20 gigawatts. And by 2020, 100 gigawatts.

That’s more than all of the world's wind power today, which stands at 94 gigawatts.

But here’s the thing that’s really striking: China is gaining speed as the global leader in the manufacture of wind power parts, too. Indeed, its equipment may feed the whole planet's appetite for wind energy one day.

Think toys, but healthier.

China’s doing so by quietly mass-producing the equipment and components that the wind energy industry in China -- and everywhere else -- needs to sustain its titanic growth.

You may recall this projection by the Global World Wind Energy Council (GWEC) -- that China's on track to be the world's #1 manufacturer of wind turbines in ‘09.

Well, it turns out there’s even more to the story. China is also cornering the market for bearings, blades and gearboxes -- nearly everything needed to harness the kinetic energy of wind.

Renewable Energy World has .

Amazing how things change:

As recently as late 2007, Chinese wind power equipment was incapable of producing megawatt-class wind turbines.

And now:

Megawatt-class turbines are increasingly produced domestically.

How’s Beijing doing it?

To help spur the development of an indigenous wind power equipment and components industry, Beijing has mandated that all new wind power projects have at least a 70% Chinese component. Wind power equipment manufacturers also now enjoy a 50% discount on value added taxes (VAT) payable in China.

Why they’re doing it is crystal clear: cha-ching.

Already there are more than 100 Chinese companies cashing in on wind equipment production. And while foreign manufacturers (Vestas, Suzlon, Gamesa, Nordex Corp., Honiton Energy Ltd. and GE Energy) are still a giant presence in China, you can bet they’re feeling the local competition. In fact, their share of the wind equipment market in China already has declined from nearly 75% a few years ago to 55% now.

What does this tell us?

Wind power parts are increasingly made in China -- and then sold in China, and in other exploding wind markets, too.

And that means America’s favorite whipping boy on global warming is both acting to solve climate and building itself a giant, multi-billion dollar green-jobs industry in the process.

Time for Washington to stop pointing fingers on clean energy solutions and start lifting one for a change. Failing to do so will be a quick ticket to the deterioration of US global competitiveness.


This is good but why just in China?

This are really good especially now that were having different crisis in the whole world. China can share all these ideas to their neighboring countries and maybe in the whole world. Inventions, products and ideas like this is worth keeping.

Wasting Billions on Windpower

I am a trained scientist and educator so I feel perfectly qualified to comment on the billions of dollars that are currently being wasted on wind power. In truth, we are spending trillions and wasting billions by building wind turbines that are as antiquated in design as the colonial waterwheel. However, the companies that are positioned to build the monoliths are reaping the benefits of those trillions of dollars, our dollars, taxpayer dollars. They sell themselves as "green" companies, while spending our money in the "least efficient" manner possible. We demand efficient cars, efficient appliances and efficient lightbulbs. Why don't we demand efficient wind power? I am not a rocket scientist, but I can remove the .19% and .23% from the wind power formula. I have designs that replace these numbers with 200% - 400%, etc. Can you please tell me if anyone is interested? RSVP dad2099

build a better turbine/

I happen to be in an area ( Northern NY and southern Ontatrio) where many of the wind turbines are being installed. I would like to build a business supporting the wind industry. You make sense. If you can build a turbine that isn't as big and in the view they will go up here. I thought a smaller trian of devices good produce equal power.

let me know

Chinese made small Wind Turbines coming too

1-20KW turbines made by a Jiangsu based Chinese company are approved for rebates by the California Energy Commission and I am researching manufacturers for other product. So much of the public media push behind wind and renewable energy is sort of nationalistic so I wonder how "made in China" turbines are going to be received? Great post, great site!

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