Thursday, January 28, 2010

China's Green Rush: Go Far East, young man!

China is applying every available energy technology to sustain its history-making growth, perhaps, at the expense of climate & health.

China is No. 1 in solar cell manufacturing.
The world's biggest supplier of solar-manufacturing equipment has opened a research and development center in China, and its chief technology officer will relocate from Silicon Valley to that country next month.
One factor in the move by Applied Materials is that China offers manufacturing incentives that aren't available for solar companies in the U.S. The tax credits in the federal stimulus package that passed in February were one of the first such incentives in a long time, says Pinto. But, he adds, "The location of factories of the kind we make isn't driven by cost." He lists the considerations that led to the company's expansion in China: "Where does the product get consumed, what is the cost of shipping, and what incentives does the government offer?" Applied Materials Moves Solar Expertise to China
And soon to be No. 3 in wind power with 20 GWs of installed capacity, equivalent to 20 nukes.
China is set to become the world's third largest wind power producer in 2009 media reported, as the Asian giant seeks various ways to expand energy supply to power its economic boom. The country's installed wind power capacity will reach 20 gigawatts this year.... That will lift China to surpass Spain and become the world's third biggest wind power producer after the United States and Germany. China to be 3rd biggest wind power producer
And China understands how to use stimulus.
The Chinese have used their stimulus in a way that will lead to long-term growth. They are building superhighways and railroads that go 200 miles per hour; aggressively investing in alternative forms of energy like solar and wind power; and forcing heavy industry to adopt clean technologies. China has huge poverty and a long way to go to solve its problems, but the economy is moving ahead strongly. China's making right moves: U.S. investors will benefit from controlling growth
Renewable energy technologies like biomass, wind, & geothermal are already cost competitive. Just shift the subsidies from coal & oil, & put a price on carbon, & bingo, solar thermal & solar PV reach scale & become cost competitive. Like China.
A new gold rush in China is actually a green rush — an urgent drive to develop green technologies. One group of Western companies, the Cleantech Initiative, suggests China's market for renewable energy could eventually be worth as much as $500 billion to $1 trillion a year.
Now, Obama administration officials are warning that the U.S. could risk losing the race in green technologies. "The future of sustainable energy is here." The words are emblazoned on a wall at the world's largest nongovernmental solar research center. It was built by an American company, Applied Materials, in the central Chinese city of Xian.
The cost of solar panels has dropped dramatically — 30 percent in the past year alone. One major reason is the "China price," or the competitive advantages offered by Chinese manufacturing, with its cheap labor and economies of scale. China is now the world's biggest producer of photovoltaic solar panels, making about 40 percent of all panels, according to the China Daily, mostly for export. The Green Rush Is On In China

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