Wind turbines have long attracted controversy in Scotland, with some arguing they are a blight on scenery and tourism as others hail them as a symbol of the country’s progressive outlook on renewables. That argument is now set to intensify as moves are being made to almost double the size of turbines nearing the end of their lifespans, according to a new report. The plans have also prompted environmental concerns as it would cause further disruption to Scotland’s peatland – which most turbines are built on – damaging the soil’s vital carbon cutting resource.
Herald 19th Nov 2018 read more »
To date, when most UK wind farms were under development, temporary planning consent of 25 years was granted. Under the terms of this consent, when the two and a half decade period comes to an end, the turbines have to be removed and the land returned to its previous use. Now, a significant number of the country’s wind farms are starting to reach the end of their permission period, 62 wind farms in England, Wales and Scotland are aged 15 and over and 22 of these are more than 20 years old. If existing sites are removed without replacement this could decrease the overall amount of energy generated from UK renewables. But all is not lost. To combat the issue, in July 2018 it was announced that the repowering of existing wind turbines would not be subject to the same planning hurdles as new sites. And our analysis has now confirmed that repowering can massively increase the energy output of the UK’s wind farms.
The Conversation 19th Nov 2018 read more »