Energy wastage on wind farms in China worsened in 2015, as plunging utilization rates kept 33.9bkWh from being delivered to the grid, which is the equivalent of 20% of total generated wind power, the energy regulator said, Reuters reported.

China is working to boost grid capacity and convince transmission firms to give priority to renewable energy. However, average utilization rates from wind farms power generation fell 165 hours in 2015, which is a decline in comparison with 2014, the regulator added, calling for tougher measures to cut wastage. 

According to the report, China’s total wind power capacity reached 133.3GW by the end of February, making up 9% of its national total, but generation levels, at 168bkWh, accounted for just 3% of the national total in 2015.

Critics have accused local governments of focusing on capacity rather than efficiency and utilization, hitting renewable energy targets by building wind farms in regions plagued by low wind speeds and insufficient grid capacity.

The regulator said it would create a power trading mechanism to transmit wind power across provincial and regional boundaries, besides taking action to make sure increases in generation and transmission capacity go hand-in-hand.

Meanwhile, as Bloomberg reported, the country is clamping down on the ability of local authorities to plan new wind-power projects in regions where the most turbines are standing idle, slowing the expansion of the industry to a pace manageable for the electricity grid. The rapid growth of wind power has left the grid struggling to connect all the plants, forcing wind turbines to stand idle because they cannot transmit to market the power they produce. The issue hit the windiest parts of China in the north, hampering the ability of the grid to move the power to the most crowded parts of the country.