It’s impossible not to feel a sense of awe when you get up close to an offshore wind farm. Only then can you appreciate the true scale of the towering structures – in this case as tall as London’s BT Tower or three Scott Monuments stacked on top of each other. But what was probably most surprising for me on my visit to Aberdeen Bay was the relative lack of noise. I had expected to hear a giant, rhythmic whomping sound and feel the turbulence as the rotors with a diameter of 164 metres chewed the air. It was all remarkably silent, save for the sea breeze, and strangely peaceful, hypnotic even. The way things are moving such developments could soon become almost as familiar a sight as their land-based counterparts. Offshore wind is the next big thing for the UK, particularly Scotland. Not only does it produce renewable electricity, helping the country achieve its climate targets, it is opening up a whole new industry – and perhaps offering a kiss of life to one that has been anticipating the last rites. With more than 6,000 miles of mainland coastline, Scotland has a lot of sea. And our much-cursed climate means we’ve also got plenty of wind. Globally the North Sea is considered one of the best places to build offshore wind farms because of its relatively shallow water and high wind speeds.
Scotsman 8th Sept 2019 read more »