Policy & Politics

Published on October 23rd, 2010 | by Susan Kraemer


World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm Begun by China

October 23rd, 2010 by  

China, which shot to world leadership in turbine production after passing renewable energy legislation (together with local construction mandates) in 2005, has begun building the world’s largest off-shore wind farm in Bohai Bay, a few hours from Beijing. The engineering design and construction of what will be the world’s largest offshore wind farm at 1,000 MW, according to Ordons energy news, is being undertaken by the state-owned China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC),

It is not that unusual for offshore oil to develop offshore wind technology. The two share some of the same technical and engineering issues. Stat-Oil in Norway is also investing in offshore wind development, because many of the engineering solutions found to develop offshore oil, are also applicable to the development of offshore wind, like building platforms in deep sea.

Once complete, in 2020, the Bohai Bay wind farm, just three hours from Beijing, will be the largest off-shore wind farm in the world, at 1,000 MW. The current world’s largest offshore wind farm in Europe just started sending power to the grid in September from a 300 MW array of turbines in the North Sea.

To build the massive infrastructure needed, nearby Tianjin has received an investment of $2.2 billion from the Chinese government. The potential is for a staggering 750 Gigawatts of offshore wind power off the coast of China, more than twice the potential 330 GW off the Atlantic coast of the US, which itself would power the East Coast twice over.

Image: Offshore oil equipment in Bohai Bay
Susan Kraemer @Twitter

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About the Author

writes at CleanTechnica, CSP-Today and Renewable Energy World.  She has also been published at Wind Energy Update, Solar Plaza, Earthtechling PV-Insider , and GreenProphet, Ecoseed, NRDC OnEarth, MatterNetwork, Celsius, EnergyNow, and Scientific American. As a former serial entrepreneur in product design, Susan brings an innovator's perspective on inventing a carbon-constrained civilization: If necessity is the mother of invention, solving climate change is the mother of all necessities! As a lover of history and sci-fi, she enjoys chronicling the strange future we are creating in these interesting times.    Follow Susan on Twitter @dotcommodity.

  • Dr.A.Jagadeesh

    Yes. China can do it. In least time,China now occupies second position in Wind Enerfgy in the world.

    Dr.A.Jagadeesh Nellore(AP),India

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  • It is the necessity of time to shift from conventional resources to non conventional renewable resources. Wind energy has enough potential to meet world’s energy demand if tapped properly.

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  • Alex

    When are we going to start harnessing the POWER of LIGHTNING?????
    That right there is exactly a jiggawatt. all we need is 210 more megawatts….

    • Usually I don’t get into the “oh but it’s so intermittent…” argument about renewables (after all its always sunny (or windy) somewhere and as we scale, we spread that risk) but, isn’t lightning just a little too intermittent for you?

      • Alex

        Lol! I was actually kinda throwing a Back to the future reference in that comment as a joke (i do that waay too much) but in reality, a bolt of lightning doesn’t really contain enough energy to be viable. It’s because a bolt of lightning lasts for some 30 ms and the peak power is high, but doesn’t contain much energy when used at a lower voltage. From wikipedia:
        “a lightning bolt carries a few million joules of energy, enough to power a 100-watt bulb for 5.5 hours”.

    • 1.21 gigawatt? 1.21 gigawatt! Great Scott.

  • thomas

    @ Dv8don,

    They ARE leading the world in curbing over-population.
    Their one child policy is only one of its kind in the world and it is probably the greatest contributor to greehouse gas reduction and other ecological benefits.

  • Joe Blow from Kokomo

    Must be the only wind farm if it has just begun and it is already the largest!

  • JP

    Someone should tell President Obama. It seems like the Chinese are doing more to change the world then he is.

    • Steve

      No need to take a jab at Obama here. He operates in our system. It’s funny, the same people that would slow him down and smear him for trying to change things for the better also bash him for not doing more without a trace of irony in their voices.

  • KC-A

    One of the advantages to running an entire country like a giant corporation is the ability to see market trends, business oppurtunities, and corporate dangers (like inadequate non-renewable resources for energy) and make an edict to the employees (citizens) that says: “We will now ramp up renewable energy production for the good of the corporation (nation). If you don’t like it, your fired (in prison)!” Makes them a bit more nimble… :-/

    • kristian……

      very awsome peragraph…indeed.

  • Peter

    Way to go, China. Put your money where your mouth is. Let people complain about your industrial pollution when you lead the world in renewable energy.

  • Gary Malcomb

    Way overdue, Renewable, clean a must,Yesterday Way to Go to go on the Wind Farm’s China. Every thumbs Up!!!…..

  • Rif

    FTA: “has begun building its first off-shore wind farm in Bohai Bay”

    China already has another offshore wind farm at 102MW up and running.


    If it really will be 2020 before this new 1GW offshore wind farm is running, it will never be able to claim the status of world largest. Nevertheless China has a longer list of wind farm in the planning process that hopefully will be generating power long before that year.

  • Dv8don

    That is great, but they need to lead the world in curbing the OVER-POPULATION FIRST!!!!!!!!!!! We only have so much of MOTHER EARTH to spread all over the world, and to be the BIGGEST USER of WORLD RESOURCES, I sadly say it is only for only their benefit!!!!

    • Name (required)

      Hey,on reduce birth rate ,we are trying our best for last 20 years,u should see our efforts on this.Population and family planning became our policy nearly 20 years.how many population have be reduced during this 20 years?we all love our mother earth,so we should keep hope rather than feel sad.

      • sam

        Wow, you tout efforts to reduce population in China as if it was a good thing. How the times they are a changin’.

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