China re­tains No 1 spot in re­new­able en­ergy

China Daily - - BUSINESS - By AN­GUS MCNE­ICE in Lon­don an­gus@mail.chi­nadai­lyuk.com

China con­tin­ues to be the world’s most fa­vor­able mar­ket for re­new­able en­ergy de­vel­op­ment and in­vest­ment, ac­cord­ing to a new study.

The Re­new­able En­ergy Coun­try At­trac­tive­ness In­dex, which is com­piled twice a year by Lon­don-based fi­nan­cial ser­vices firm EY — for­merly known as Ernst and Young — high­lighted the large quan­ti­ties of pub­lic and pri­vate funds pour­ing into re­new­able power projects in China, as well as sev­eral en­ergy-ef­fi­ciency poli­cies.

Af­ter con­ced­ing the top place in the poll to China in the pre­vi­ous in­dex, the United States re­mains in third place. The UK ranks 10th among 40 economies.

Ear­lier this year, China’s Na­tional En­ergy Ad­min­is­tra­tion an­nounced it would spend $363 bil­lion by 2020 on de­vel­op­ing re­new­able power ca­pac­ity. The in­vest­ment will see re­new­ables ac­count for half of all new gen­er­ated ca­pac­ity and cre­ate 13 mil­lion jobs.

So­lar ca­pac­ity in China rose by 21 gi­gawatts dur­ing the past six months, and the gov­ern­ment has set new tar­gets to can­cel or de­fer 106 gi­gawatts of en­ergy cre­ated by coal power.

“The in­dex high­lights that gov­ern­ment pol­icy is piv­otal in driv­ing re­new­able en­ergy de­vel­op­ment glob­ally,” said Ben War­ren, cor­po­rate fi­nance leader for global power and util­i­ties at EY.

The US lost its top rank in May af­ter the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion de­cided to roll back many of the pre­vi­ous ad­min­is­tra­tion’s cli­mate change poli­cies.

The US now sits be­hind In­dia, with Ger­many, Aus­tralia, France, Ja­pan, Chile, Mex­ico and the UK round­ing out the top 10.

Bro­ken down by sec­tor, China topped the EY rank­ings for both on­shore wind and so­lar power. EY de­clared the UK to be the most at­trac­tive econ­omy for off­shore wind in­vest­ment, fol­lowed by China and Ger­many.

The re­port noted Bri­tain’s strength in the off­shore wind sec­tor, where en­ergy prices con­tinue to fall.

The 50th is­sue of the EY list­ing in­cludes pro­jec­tions that new wind and so­lar power will ac­count for 34 per­cent of global elec­tric­ity gen­er­a­tion by 2040.

China has firmly es­tab­lished it­self as a global leader in clean en­ergy ad­di­tions in re­cent years. In 2015, China con­trib­uted 36 per­cent of the global to­tal for new in­vest­ment in re­new­able power and fu­els, ac­cord­ing to the UN En­vi­ron­ment Pro­gramme.

China ac­counted for more than 40 per­cent of ca­pac­ity growth in global re­new­able en­ergy in 2016, which was a record year for world­wide clean en­ergy ad­di­tions, ac­cord­ing to the In­ter­na­tional En­ergy Agency.

SONG WEIXING / FOR CHINA DAILY

Work­ers check so­lar power gen­er­a­tion fa­cil­i­ties in Tian­chang, East China’s An­hui prov­ince.

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