The world’s highest wind farm, situated in China’s Tibet Autonomous Region, has generated over 100 million kWh of electricity since operations began in December 2021.

The turbines, which are found at altitudes of 5,000 to 5,200 meters make up the Comai Trigu wind farm in the Trigu township of Comai county.

The wind farm belongs to the China Three Gorges Corporation and is the first wind project connected to Tibet’s grid. The project has a total installed capacity of 22MW.

Tibet is a key part of China’s plans to increase its renewable capacity, given its unique topography, which is well suited for wind, solar and geothermal power installations.

China’s National Climate Centre found that the region has enough sites with reliably strong wind to power 600GWof turbines, with another 420GW possible in parts of the plateau in neighbouring regions including Qinghai, Gansu, Sichuan, Yunnan and Xinjiang.

Xi Jinping’s “energy revolution”

Wind power is a market leader for Chinese companies despite the international industry struggling with higher production costs.

A year ago the Chinese government announced that it plans to build 450GW of solar and wind capacity in the Gobi desert and other desert areas.

In order to limit carbon emissions by 2030 president Xi Jinping has pledged to bring China’s total wind and solar capacity to at least 1,200GW.

In 2021 China built more offshore wind turbines than any other country in the five years prior.

During the Chinese Communist Party’s 20th National Congress Xi Jinping said: “We must speed up the green transformation, implement comprehensive conservation strategies, develop green and low-carbon industries, advocate green consumption, and promote green and low-carbon production methods and lifestyles”.

Despite efforts to install more renewable capacity in the country, the Chinese government remains committed to coal-generated power in the short term.

Last year the government approved the construction of another 106GW of coal-fired power capacity, this was four times higher than a year prior and the highest levels since 2015, according to Global Energy Monitor (GEM).

These figures seemingly contradict an announcement from the Chinese energy regulator in early 2022, which said that no new coal power plants would be permitted solely for the purposes of bulk power generation.

Flora Champenois, a GEM research analyst said: “China continues to be the glaring exception to the ongoing global decline in coal plant development […] This kind of a process leaves little room for proper planning or consideration of alternatives”.