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Power Generation and Cumulative Capacity of Hydro Power Plants in China (2017 – 2021)

  • Net electricity generated by Hydro power plants in China reached 1,323,741.1 GWh in 2021, growing 1.1% YoY

  • During the same year, the cumulative capacity of Hydro power plants in China reached 379,783.4 MW, growing 2.6% YoY

  • Power generation recorded a historical growth at a CAGR of 3.6% between 2017 and 2021, while the cumulative capacity growth at 2.5% between 2017 and 2021

Power Generation and Cumulative Capacity of Hydro Power Plants in China (2017 – 2021)

Published: December 2021
Source: GlobalData

>With the increasing demand for energy, rising levels of pollution, fear of global warming, scarcity of fossil fuels, and increasing levels of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, many countries opted for sources of clean renewable energy. Several countries signed protocols with pre-defined emission reduction targets. The Paris Agreement is the most recent initiative in this direction, whereby each country voluntarily determined and presented its emission reduction target and pledged to achieve GHG reduction according to this target. Several countries that are party to the Paris Agreement devised plans to reduce conventional power and aid the growth of renewable power to reduce emissions. The main renewable energy sources are Hydro, Geothermal, Wind, Solar, and Biopower. 

Hydroelectric energy is the energy harnessed from the kinetic energy of water, i.e., the movement of water, by installing a dam or hydroelectric power plant around flowing water. Hydropower is one of the most widely used renewable sources for the generation of clean power globally. Hydropower technology is also considered preferable to other renewable sources as it releases less GHG emissions during power generation. It has already helped avoid more than 200 million metric tonnes of carbon each year, equivalent to the emissions of 38 million passenger cars. 

The global installed hydropower capacity increased from 1,014.6 gigawatts (GW) in 2010 to 1,325.8 GW in 2020, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.7%. The global installed hydropower capacity is expected to reach 1,587.0 GW by 2030. In 2021, the top five regions in the hydropower market are China, Canada, Brazil, the US, and Russia. 

China is the largest wind power market, with cumulative hydropower installed capacity of  
379,783 MW as of 2021, growing at a CAGR of 2.5% during 2017–21. The hydropower market in the country generated 280,937 GWh of electricity in 2021, which declined at a CAGR of 3.6% during 2017–21. 

The Chinese Government have introduced various policies for renewable energy growth and use, including indicative renewable energy goals, renewable energy planning, the entry of renewable energy products into the market, the connection of renewable power generation projects to the grid, the provision of Feed-in Tariffs (FiT), fiscal and taxation, renewable energy technology R&D, and diffusion. These efforts by the Chinese government have greatly helped renewable power market to grow. 

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