Friday, August 28, 2009

Runaway Train: China’s Worried About Over-Heated Clean-Energy Sector

From the Wall Street Journal's Environmental Capital blog:
Like Casey Jones, China’s wind and solar industries need to watch their speed.

That’s the word after the Chinese government said “redundant projects” have surfaced in the emerging sectors of wind power and polysilicon, the raw material for solar panels, according to Xinhua.

Analysts following China’s renewable-energy market said the government’s announcement could slam the brakes on what has been a massive buildup of clean-energy manufacturing resources.

Even as the global market for solar-power gear has collapsed, Chinese production has plowed ahead—China’s polysilicon production capacity will jump to 86,000 tons by the end of the year, according to a recent report from China Reality Research Ltd. That would put even more pressure on plummeting silicon prices which are wracking the solar sector.

But that’s a molehill next to the mountain of wnd turbines China’s been pumping out, after it jumpstarted a domestic industry with an eye on dominating the fast-growing market.....MORE