UK onshore wind farms now exceed 5 GW of installed capacity

September 24th, 2012 by RenewableUK

RenewableUK, the trade and professional body for the wind and marine energy industries, is celebrating the achievement of the installation of UK onshore wind turbines totalling a peak output of 5 gigawatts.

Drone Hill wind farm under construction (click image to expand - image ©Paul Donaldson, AES)

The 5 GW milestone was reached with the operation of AES Wind Generation’s 28.6MW Drone Hill wind farm, in the Scottish Borders local authority, less than 18 months after construction commenced.

This wind farm will generate enough clean energy to power the equivalent of 14,700 homes.

The 22 turbine Drone Hill wind farm in operation. (click image to expand - ©Paul Donaldson, AES)

The first onshore project to go live following this development was the single 500 kw turbine Resilient Energy Great Dunklins project in Gloucestershire.

This project was funded by local residents and individual investors contributing sums as little as £5, generating returns for both them and the local community.

Resilient Energy Great Dunklins has now signed a deal with Co-operative Energy to buy the output of the wind turbine, meaning that local residents can use the power from their own wind turbine.

Reports in recent months have shown the value of renewables in protecting consumers against fossil fuel price shocks, as well as the value of wind in reducing carbon, and the potential for jobs and investment from the wind industry.

Maria McCaffery, RenewableUK’s Chief Executive, said “I’m delighted that the landmark of 5 GW of onshore wind in the UK has been achieved.”

“The benefits of onshore wind for communities, bill-payers, workers and the environment are well-understood, with two thirds of the public supporting wind.”

“With the Great Dunklins project we’ve seen people demonstrating their support by choosing to invest in this key technology for the UK’s energy future.”

“With 8,600 people currently employed in UK onshore wind, the potential for this to double by 2020, and £100,000 of value going to the local community each year for each megawatt of onshore power installed, we need to ensure that we maintain this surge in momentum to deliver jobs, growth and clean energy.”


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