Renewables First Ltd.

Renewables First Ltd.

Agriculture Wind Turbine Services

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The government’s Feed-in Tariff (FiT) scheme was set-up in 2009 to increase the number of small-scale renewable energy generators throughout the country.  If you have a suitable site, farm wind turbines can provide substantial amounts of energy to both reduce your electricity bill and in many cases produce a significant long-term income, without having any impact on your everyday farming activities.  Renewables First provide all of the services needed to deliver a successful project, from feasibility study all of the way to installation and ongoing support.

1. Site wind speed

Ideally your site will have a mean (average) wind speed of at least 6.5 metres/second.  Typically this would be in an elevated position in hilly terrain, be close to the coast or be in a wide, flat plain.

2. Proximity to neighbours

The wind turbine(s) should be at least 500 metres from your nearest neighbour; this ensures negligible risk of noise issues with neighbours, which can complicate the planning process.  It is possible to get closer (possibly as low as 350 metres) but this would need special noise surveys.

3. Grid connection

Ideally you will connect to a three-phase 11 kV (11,000 volts) power line to a suitable existing substation. As a rule of thumb, the substation will have to be double the size of the wind turbine you want to connect, so for example for a single 330 kW wind turbine you will need a 660 kW (minimum) substation.  If you don’t have a suitable substation a new one will have to be installed which will only be possible if the grid is strong enough.  Grid upgrades can be expensive, so if there is any doubt this issue needs exploring early in the feasibility study stage.

4. Access to the site

Wind turbine blades are long and the wind turbine tower is very heavy and wide at the base.  Hence access will need to be wide enough (typically 5 metres minimum) with gradients less than 12%, no weight restrictions and no sharp bends.  It is possible to overcome some access issues (for example by re-profiling a bend), but this costs money so access upgrades should be minimised.

If you think your wind turbine site passes the four basic tests above, the following issues also need consideration:

  • Environmental designations - ideally without any special designations (i.e. not SSSI/ SPA / SAC / RAMSAR etc.)
  • Landscape designations – preferably not in a National Park or an AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty).
  • Aviation concerns – not too close to an airport or MOD / Met Office radar.  This is difficult for members of the public to check, but would be considered in detail in our Wind Feasibility Study.
  • Communications (microwave links) – again difficult for non-specialists to check and is covered in the Wind Feasibility Study – but do you have a microwave mast on or close to your land?  Microwave links are not show-stoppers, but can slow-up the planning consent process.

If you think your farm is suitable for a wind turbine we can provide all of the wind turbine development services you’ll require – use the buttons below to get in touch so we can discuss your site in more detail.

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