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MPhil in Engineering for Sustainable Development

global challenges, engineering solutions

Studying at Cambridge

Zhoujian Li

A Transition Toward a Sustainable Power Potential: Feasibility Evaluation and Improvement Methods of Wind Power in China
As the world’s fastest growing economy in the past three decades, China has been enjoying its great success. Meanwhile, China is also suffering from the heavy pollution that came along with the fast economic growth. The heavily dependence on fossil fuels has brought China a series of massive environmental and social problems.
Especially in recent years, these problems have become more and more critical that forcing Chinese people and government to finally realize the cost is too high to cover by China’s economical successes.
Wind power is one of the world’s cleanest forms of energy. However, China did not start its first wind power project until 1986. By the year 2003, China’s total install wind power capacity has just reached approximately 0.62GW. Ten years later, by the end of year 2012, this figure has reached to a staggering number of 77GW. Today, China has become the world largest wind power producer with the share of over 30% in the world. However, the total exploitable potential wind power in China is believed to be over 3100GW, that means China still have long way to go before there is not enough wind to turn the newly installed turbines.
This dissertation is intended to evaluate the feasibility of further development on the wind power in China. To ensure the necessity of wind power development in China; to recognize the problems that China is facing in its development of wind farms; to realize the importance of grid efficiency to the wind power development in China; to understand the policy behind China’s wind power development; to discuss the controversial decisions on China’s wind power development and the potential problems that could occur in the future development.
Finally, this dissertation will suggest the improvement methods for wind power in China. The recommendation is intended to make the wind power system in China more economical, more socially acceptable and more environmentally friendly, andthus more sustainable.