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Wind Energy in China

2017 wind energy numbers

China continues to have the highest wind power capacity in the world, although the pace of growth slowed in 2017. 19,659 MW of new wind power capacity was installed, representing a 15.9% decrease in growth from last year. Accumulated capacity increased to 188,390 MW.

Grid-connected capacity increased to 164,000 MW with the addition of 15,030 MW installed in 2017. New wind power capacity accounted for 9.2% of installed power capacity nationwide. New installations in the mid-eastern and southern regions account for 50% of the total new installation capacity.

Wind power remains the third largest generation source in China, following thermal and hydro-electricity sources. The average full-load-hour of wind power was 1,948 hours in 2017, an increase of 203 hours from 2016. Wind-generated electricity totaled 305.7 TWh, increase 26.3% over the previous year. Wind-generated electricity accounted for 4.8% of the total electricity generation, an increase of 0.7% over 2016. The average wind curtailment rate was 12%, a decline of 3% compared to 2016.

To read more about China’s wind energy sector, read CWEA’s chapter in the IEA Wind TCP Annual Report.



Total wind power capacity is 188.390 MW.


Wind power capacity in China increased by 19.700 MW in 2017.


China produces 305.7 TWh from wind energy, which accounts for 4.8% of the country’s electricity consumption.

National Targets

In 2017, the National Energy Administration (NEA) issued guidelines on implementation of the 13th Five-Year Plan. These guidelines included measures promoting assumption, reducing cost, and more to ensure the completion of the five-year plan. In addition, the guidelines updated wind energy construction targets for the provinces from 2017 to 2020.

According to the plan, new installations will reach 110 GW—significantly more than the previous five-year plan target of 79 GW. Henan and Hebei will be the fastest growing provinces, with the new installation of 12 and 11 GW.

Progress & Operational Details

A total of 9,310 new wind turbines were installed in 2017, bringing the national total of operating turbines to 114,244. The average capacity of newly installed wind turbines was about 2.1 MW, an increase of 7.3% since 2016. The average capacity of all installed wind turbines increased to 1.7 MW. The five provinces with the most new installed capacity were: Hebei (2.1 GW), Shandong (1.5 GW), Jiangsu (1.5 GW), Inner Mongolia (1.4 GW), and Qinghai (1.3 GW).

Together, these accounted for 40% of the new capacity nationwide. The middle, eastern, and southern regions of China account for 50% of new installations. The average weighted full load hours of operating wind farms totaled 1,948 hours, an increase of 203 hours as compared to 2016.

National RDD Priorities and Budget

In 2017, the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People’s Republic of China launched the National Quality Infrastructure (NQI) Research Program. The program, which includes 76 tasks, began implementation in 2017 and aims to improve the innovation capability of NQI in China. The total budget is above 700 million CNY (89.7 million EUR; 107.6 million USD), and the budget for renewable energy is above 10 million CNY (1.3 million EUR; 1.5 million USD). Two research projects are related to wind power:

  • Testing, monitoring, and evaluation technology of key renewable energy equipment in service including detective techniques without disassembly for key mechanical parts of wind turbines; early damage and operation condition monitoring technologies; and key battery storage technologies.
  • Quality evaluation technologies for renewable energy and related products, including reliability design and evaluation of wind turbines. This project explores quality evaluation technology for the whole production process of key components of wind turbines, and evaluations of performance, operational reliability, and residual life of wind turbines.
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