China launches giant wave energy turbine near Wuhan despite COVID-19


The Chinese seabed off the coast of Wuhan city is now host to a mammoth 500kW tidal stream turbine. The turbine, installed over the last 18 months, is near the epicentre of the global COVID-19 outbreak that has seen renewable energy projects delayed or stricken.

Scottish renewable energy project developers SIMEC Atlantis Energy, in partnership with China Three Gorges (“CTG”) installed the new wave energy plant between the islands of Putuoshan and Huludao in the Zhoushan archipelago in China.

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Tidal energy in China

China is currently working to cut its coal consumption which, with fossil fuel accounting for just under 60% of the country’s overall energy consumption, is a huge challenge. Its strict 2015 Paris climate change commitments have been met, reflecting domestic political desire to respond to environmental concerns and address urban pollution. As such, the country is actively seeking out renewable investment opportunities, with studies estimating that tidal stream energy in China could supply more than 8.2GW to the country’s grid.

The natural resource and commercial opportunity China represents for the tidal stream power industry is significant.

Tim Cornelius, Chief Executive of SIMEC Atlantis Energy, said: “Atlantis can be extremely proud of the role we played in this project. The fast execution, from concept design to installation, represents a phenomenal feat of engineering that bodes well for a rapid future roll-out of tidal power in China, which in turn will have material cost reduction implications globally”