Background

The UK government has targeted the installation of 13GW of onshore wind power by 2020. In order to meet the targets laid down, there will need to be significant further development of onshore wind farms. There are more than 340 operational onshore wind farms in  UK, 126 in England, 34 in Northern Ireland, and 142 in Scotland(UKWED).  However, the planning approval rates for new projects are ‘surprisingly’ low, due in part to public opposition in affected communities.The WindNet research network aims to better understand how wind development will be perceived and received by members of the general public. WindNet aims to provide an integrated assessment of impacts associated with wind development.

WindNet brings together expertise from 6 Departments across 4 Faculties  in order to provide an integrated interdisciplinary perspective on several of the key socio-technical barriers that might influence the smooth development of wind farms. More specifically, WindNet aims to compare and contrast the relative impacts of large-scale wind power developments on three key dimensions:

The cumulative landscape and visual impact (Project 1)

The well-being impact of wind turbines using noise mapping (Project 2)

The energy generation impacts of wind turbine design and location (Project 3)