22 January 2008

They Need to be Plugged In to do Any Good

Once again, poor planning upsets "the best laid plans of mice and men". Shoddy planning and infrastructure mar the gloss of grand announcements and press releases.
China's wind power generating capacity surged to 5.6 gigawatts by the end of last year, but over a quarter of it is still not connected to the grid because of bad planning, an industry expert said on Wednesday....because local governments are keen to jump on the renewable energy bandwagon as Beijing pushes greener growth, they are approving new wind farms without proper planning, Shi said.

And as a result, only 4 GW of the new capacity is actually connected to the grid, and even facilities that are linked up can face problems selling their power because output is so variable....They don't like having to find back-up energy sources for less windy times, and wind power costs more than power generated with coal, he added.
Source via TH via Tom Nelson

Poor planning and inadequate infrastructure to support well-meaning schemes is a pattern in mainland China. The economic activity goes onto the balance sheet--and it certainly looks good on paper--but it is not connected to anything in the real world. It is meaningless except to China's phantom economy, which--until the crash--seems more important to most analysts.

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“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” _George Orwell

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