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The installation of three new wind turbines looks set to boost the environmental credentials of the Falklands.
Currently 26% of the islands energy demands are met by three turbines installed in 2007, but the addition of three new turbines could see as much of 40% of the areas power coming from renewable energy sources.
This projected figure far exceeds the UK Government’s goal of producing 20 per cent of the UK’s electricity needs through renewable initiatives by 2020.
In addition to lowering the Islands carbon footprint, the cost of energy in this region has reduced by six pence per unit due to the introduction of the existing wind turbines. This is because a significant amount of energy was previously supplied via costly diesel generators.
The turbines arrived on the Ministry of Defence charter ship, Hurst Point, in September 2009. They are the same type and make as the first three turbines: 330 kilo-watt synchronous variable speed and variable pitch turbines, manufactured by Enercon (Germany).
The turbines have been installed at Sand Bay Wind Farm, six miles from the Islands’ capital Stanley and approximately one kilometre across the valley from the first three turbines.
Phase Three of the development of the wind farm will be energy storage, achieved by charging a 2MWh battery during optimal wind times and discharging the battery when wind is not available. This will ensure that energy production is kept more constant.
Glenn Ross, Power Station Manager and a Member of the Government’s Legislative Assembly, said: “We are excited about the installation of the three new turbines as Phase One of the wind farm project has been very successful and a further significant step in wind power contribution is certain.”
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