Clean Power

Published on January 18th, 2011 | by Zachary Shahan


China Got Over 1/4 of Its Electricity from Clean Energy in 2010

January 18th, 2011 by  

Yes, 26.53% of electricity generated in China in 2010 was from clean energy according to a new report out by the China Electricity Council (CEC).

Total installed power capacity increased 10.07% to 962 GW in 2010 and electricity consumption grew 14.56%, reaching over 4.19 trillion kWh. The portion of that provided by clean energy grew by about 1%.

Hydropower provided a huge portion of China’s electricity, 213.4 GW (up from 196 GW in 2009). Wind power increased a ton, almost doubling and reaching 31.07 GW. Nuclear power increased a little from 9 GW to 10.82 GW.

Reportedly, due to its clean energy increases and its interest in reducing its carbon emissions, China shut down a number of fossil-fuel power plants. In total, output from such plants was cut about 11 GW.

By 2015, China is hoping to have about 1/3 of its power capacity coming from clean energy sources, even with the goal of increasing total capacity to 1440 GW.

Related Stories:

1. Wow, China IS Serious About Clean Energy!
2. China Adding 500 Gigawatts of Renewable Power by 2020!
3. World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm Begun by China

Photo Credit: Steve Webel

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About the Author

is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species) with the power of the typed word. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor, but he's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession, Solar Love, and Bikocity. Zach is recognized globally as a solar energy, electric car, and energy storage expert. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in.

  • Let’s not forget that have taken over 1/2 if not more of US jobs also. A US Solar panel maker just laid off over 200 workers and are moving to China. I’m all for clean energy in any country but when it takes our jobs,it upsets me.

    • Yeah, the businesses have to be practical, though. Until the U.S. creates a more clean-energy-supportive economy, China is going to inevitably pull some jobs. It is going so much faster to promote clean energy.

  • Pingback: U.S. Poised for Wind and Solar Power Boom – CleanTechnica: Cleantech innovation news and views()

  • Larry Le Due

    This is another classic example of China “cooking the books”. What a load of pure BS ! China tells its people what to do, how to do it and when to do it and now are telling you what they want you to believe. Pure bunk ! What about the install rate of one new coal fired power plant every week ? You do the math on how much RE it takes to equal 25% of this polluting source. Maybe they think you belive in “clean coal” as RE.

    • Larry Le Due: while China may be increasing its coal usage, it is clearly steaming ahead in regards to clean energy. you don’t need to see a report to know it, they have plenty of real-world humungo projects. the data (assuming it is fairly accurate) is interesting to look at, though.

  • sola

    Impressive transformation.

    I hope they keep up this pace and reach the 33% ratio in 2015.

  • I’m delighted, as we all should be, that China is serious about renewable energy. Their progress on wind and solar is breathtaking. Some caveats, though: I would hesitate to call nuclear renewable and it’s most certainly not clean. ( As to big hydro, it’s renewable – if the water doesn’t run out when the Himalayas melt – but there are any number of environmental concerns, including habitat loss, the production of massive amounts of methane, mercury migrating into fish, etc. (

    • thanks for the extra comments, Bill. i definitely have my hesitations about both as well

  • Anthony

    Come on, everyone knows that you simply just cannot believe what the Chinese government says……well, at least every Chinese knows that…

  • Dukejohns

    The majority of China’s “clean energy” seems to be coming from hydroelectric power. This means dams to create the water power to generate this electricity. There seems to be not concern with the hardships this has created for the Chinese people and the towns/cities destroyed by the water back-up. I realize that clean energy is going to require a lot of changes if it is going to work, but we also need to be mindful of the human costs involved also.

    • Dukejohns, good additional points. I think the main issue these days is climate change, since that will create hardships like we’ve never seen if not at least slowed soon. But your point that there are other problems caused by hydro that need to be considered and addressed is an important one

  • Freebeazy

    What are the odds that these numbers are accurate? China isn’t really known for their honest reporting, which invariably comes from a non-third party government agency.

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