China's plot to lead in renewable energy

Posted by jeckert on 07/15/2009

windturbines1 See what China's up to now in an eye-opening article from the NY times:
China has built the world’s largest solar panel manufacturing industry by exporting over 95 percent of its output to the United States and Europe. But when China authorized its first solar power plant this spring, it required that at least 80 percent of the equipment be made in China. When the Chinese government took bids this spring for 25 large contracts to supply wind turbines, every contract was won by one of seven domestic companies. All six multinationals that submitted bids were disqualified on various technical grounds, like not providing sufficiently detailed data. This spring, the Chinese government banned virtually any installation of wind turbines with a capacity of less than 1,000 kilowatts — excluding 850-kilowatt designs, a popular size for European manufacturers. ... European wind turbine makers have stopped even bidding for some Chinese contracts after concluding that their bids would not be seriously considered, said Jörg Wuttke, the president of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China. American companies play a smaller role in the global renewable energy industry, but some of them are also growing exasperated with the Chinese market. “That has been a tough market for non-Chinese manufacturers,” said Victor Abate, General Electric’s vice president for wind energy.

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