China

Market potential for DE in China is enormous but clear policies will be required in order for it to be realized. Demand for electricity has been growing at rates and scales that dwarf those of Europe and North America, with capacity installed in 2004 exceeding the total capacity of the United Kingdom. Increasingly high electricity prices, rotating blackouts, coal shortages, emerging gas availability, and the growing appeal of renewables for their environmental benefits are all factors that will drive Chinese investment in DE. Policies to promote renewables have recently had a high profile but other forms of DE still require attention. International Climate Change negotiations may also rise in influence in Chinese energy policy (Table 2.20).

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