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China Struggles to Bring Wind Power to Grid


China is pausing in its transition from fossil to clean energy as it wrestles with the distribution challenge of long distances separating regions with lots of wind from regions with lots of industry and energy demand.

China is now the world’s leading producer of wind power, but continues to face distribution bottlenecks. In one move, the central government put a temporary stop to the installation of additional wind turbines in its northern provinces, where 71 gigawatts of installed capacity already exceed what can be delivered to consumers. “It’s at least the fourth time in five years that Beijing has ordered wind operators there to slow down growth,” InsideClimate News reports.

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Meanwhile, Reuters reports that China has ordered its power transmission companies “to provide grid connectivity for all renewable power generation sources,” and is constructing additional “ultra-high voltage” transmission lines from the windy north to the industrial south, to bring its clean power supply and demand into better balance.