China Gives Initial Approval to Increase Wind-Power Capacity 36%

China, already the world’s biggest wind-power market, gave conditional approval for construction of 27.6 gigawatts of new projects. That would increase the country’s installed capacity about 36 percent if all were built.

The National Energy Administration today listed projects that it said should be given final approval by provincial authorities, provided transmission grids can handle the new flows and there is sufficient consumer demand. Those proposals not meeting the conditions must be canceled, the NEA said in a statement on its website.

Since the agency tightened the approval process in 2011, it has given a green light to more than 110 gigawatts of wind power projects, including today’s group, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The agency in that year began requiring local authorities to seek its permission before adding capacity, after new plants had begun clogging grids.

“Most of the projects in the plan are in central and southern China,” said Demi Zhu, a Beijing-based analyst from Bloomberg New Energy Finance. She said she expects the nation to add 14.7 gigawatts of wind power this year, compared with 14 gigawatts estimated for 2013.

The plan excludes Heilongjiang, Jilin, Inner Mongolia and Yunnan, where the grid has been overloaded with the carbon-free energy.

— With assistance by Feifei Shen

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