World Bank offers guidance for offshore and onshore wind power development

08:16, June 08, 2010      

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The World Bank launched two new reports on wind power today. The reports, titled “Regulatory Review of Offshore Wind in Five European Countries” and “Strategic Guidance,” present examples and options for consideration by China in meeting the challenges of offshore and large scale onshore wind power development.

In recent years, China’s achievements in wind power development have exceeded expectations and planning targets. Wind power development in China has made remarkable progress particularly during the 11th Five-Year Plan period (2006–2011). By the end of 2009, China had the third largest installed capacity of wind power in the world, and a market growing at a rate that is likely to be the largest in the world in the coming years. The Government plans to scale up onshore wind in resource-rich regions of the country, undertake pilot intertidal projects, and initiate development work on medium- and deepwater offshore wind farms.

“China’s achievement is impressive and the scale-up strategy is sound. The World Bank is honored to be associated with this important renewable energy development and is partnering with the National Energy Administration (NEA) to support implementation of the Government’s vision,” says Gailius Draugelis, World Bank’s Energy Sector Coordinator for China.

An overview of lessons learned from international experience in large-scale wind power development, and practical implementation guidance for future wind power development in China was the focus of a recent joint initiative of the NEA and the World Bank. This resulted in the two reports, which were launched at the China Offshore Wind Conference in Shanghai.

With that in mind, “Regulatory Review of Offshore Wind in Five European Countries” provides a detailed description and evaluation of the regulatory approaches that various countries in Europe have taken to develop offshore wind energy. Based on the evaluation of experience to date, the report makes recommendations for the regulation of offshore wind in China.

The second report, “Strategic Guidance”, builds on the lessons learned from international experience, provides technical guidance for offshore and large-scale onshore wind development in China, and presents a roadmap with institutional, preparatory, demonstration and research and development tasks. The report stresses that a key component of success will be ensuring that wind farms are built in places where some key requirements are present. The report identifies the following as the main principles for the efficient development of wind resources:

Confirmation of wind characteristics
Adequate project design and proven turbines
Assurance of regulatory clarity, predictability and adequate incentives
Availability of skilled staff for design, manufacturing, and operations and maintenance
Getting grid planning and development right.

“The development of large wind power bases, as well as intertidal and offshore wind farms, poses technical, operational, and financing challenges,” says Dejan Ostojic, Sector Leader, World Bank’s East Asia and Pacific Region, Infrastructure Unit. “The Government of China is well aware of these challenges, and recognizes the importance of having the appropriate policy and regulatory frameworks in place. The World Bank is committed to working with the Government to complement its efforts for ensuring a sustainable energy future.”

In addition to the two World Bank reports prepared with the support of the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) and the Asia Sustainable and Alternative Energy Program (ASTAE), other studies on various important aspects of wind power development are under way as part of the China Renewable Energy Scale-Up Program (CRESP), a joint program of the Government of China, World Bank, and Global Environment Facility (GEF) for renewable energy policy development and investment. Examples of relevant studies supported under CRESP include assessment of wind resources in potential wind farm sites in coastal provinces, research into construction technologies for offshore and intertidal wind farms, as well as detailed research and studies on the integration of wind farms into the grid and the operation of a system with large wind power capacity.


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