‘Astonishing’ China drives 63GW of new wind in 2015 – GWEC

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A record 30.5GW of new wind power installations in China last year helped to drive new global installed capacity past 63GW, an annual market growth of 22% for 2015, according to Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) statistics.

Steve Sawyer,  GWEC secretary general,  tells Recharge that as a result of its “astonishing” annual market, China has now edged past the European Union in terms of total installed capacity with a cumulative capacity of 145.1GW, compared to the EU’s 141.6GW.

GWEC says the Chinese government’s drive for clean energy,  supported by continuous policy improvement,  is motivated by the need to reduce its dependence on coal – the main source of the choking smog strangling China’s major cities – as well as growing concern over climate change.

The GWEC 2015 statistics show the US market added 8.6GW of new capacity last year on the back of a strong fourth quarter surge, while Germany led a stronger than expected performance in Europe with a record 6GW of new installations,  including 2.3GW offshore.

GWEC calculates that total cumulative global wind capacity reached 432.4GW at the end of 2015,  representing a cumulative growth of 17% compared to the previous year.

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