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.