Folly Farm wind power study
Looking at the potential for a wind turbine at a nature reserve and study centre in Somerset.
Project duration: January 2005 to March 2005
The aim of this project was to investigate the potential for a wind turbine at the 250-acre Folly Farm nature reserve and study centre in Somerset, owned and managed by Avon Wildlife Trust.
A secondary objective was to explore the opportunities for community involvement and renewable energy awareness-raising among the site's users.
The study involved the following areas of work:
- technical options appraisal for wind-powered energy use at the site, including on-site wind speed monitoring
- production of costings and discounted payback periods for the range of technical options
- identification of sources of finance for the implementation of recommended options
- evaluation of the environmental benefits, legal considerations and planning consent issues relevant to the proposed installation, particularly with regard to the environmentally sensitive nature of the site and its SSSI designation
- development of proposals for education and awareness-raising of wind power and other renewable energy aspects of the site among visitors to Folly Farm.
The study was completed in early 2005 and concluded that a small-scale wind turbine would be an appropriate addition to the suggested development and would complement the renewable energy technologies already proposed for the site.
For the wind speeds modelled, a turbine of at least 15kW is proposed in order to generate an amount close to Folly Farm's predicted electricity consumption. Grant funding would need to be sourced in order to achieve reasonable payback periods.
The report also recommends that an educational programme is designed to fully exploit the sustainable energy aspects of the site.