LONDON (Reuters) - Global wind power capacity grew 24 percent to 197 gigawatts in 2010, due to revised figures for new installed capacity in China, the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) said on Wednesday.
New global wind capacity in 2010 amounted to 38.3 GW, close to 2009’s level of 38.6 GW, according to GWEC, the Chinese Renewable Energy Industry Association and the Chinese Wind Energy Association.
New world wind capacity was estimated at 35.8 GW in February, which represented a slide in the annual market for the first time in 20 years.
But China added 18.9 gigawatts of new wind power capacity in 2010, making its total capacity 44.7 GW, GWEC said in a statement. This compares to earlier estimates of 42.3 GW.
China’s wind market doubled every year between 2005 and 2009 in terms of total installed capacity, and it has been the world’s largest annual market since 2009.
In 2010, China overtook the United States as the country with the most installed wind energy capacity.
“China has become the single largest driver for global wind power development. In 2010, every second wind turbine that was added anywhere in the world was installed in China.” said Steve Sawyer, GWEC’s Secretary General.
Reporting by Nina Chestney