The future is looking brighter for wind energy exchange traded funds (ETFs) as China begins spending heavily to build a domestic market for renewable energy sources such as wind and solar. The Chinese government’s goal is to have renewable energy account for 15% of its fuel needs by 2020.

Wind energy is definitely a growth market. According to a report on global global wind energy market trends and future forecasts from Renub Research, global cumulative installed wind energy grew at an 26% annual rate for the period from 1990 to 2007. Much of the growth occurred in countries such as the United States, India and China. These same three countries are also expected to drive future growth in the industry, especially China. (Why wind and solar are worth a look).

This year alone China has installed more wind-generation capacity than any other country and is expected to become the world’s biggest producer of wind energy by 2013.

China is pushing hard on renewables for several reasons, including its attempt to electrify the nation while simultaneously lowering greenhouse gas emissions. But perhaps even more importantly, China recognizes that the renewable energy industry is a 21st century industry of importance, writes Julie Schmit for USA Today. China is already spending $9 billion a month on clean energy development. (Alternative isn’t so alternative now).

For more stories on the wind industry, please see our wind category.

  • First Trust ISE Global Wind Energy ETF (NYSE: FAN), up 21.77% year-to-date

  • Powershares Global Wind Energy Portfolio (NYSE: PWND), up 36.25% year-to-date

Tony D’Altorio contributed to this article.

The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.