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Resource Documents: Europe (25 items)

RSSEurope

Documents presented here are not the product of nor are they necessarily endorsed by National Wind Watch. These resource documents are provided to assist anyone wishing to research the issue of industrial wind power and the impacts of its development. The information should be evaluated by each reader to come to their own conclusions about the many areas of debate.


Date added:  December 21, 2016
Europe, WildlifePrint storyE-mail story

Patterns of migrating soaring migrants indicate attraction to marine wind farms

Author:  Skov, Henrik; et al.

Abstract:
Monitoring of bird migration at marine wind farms has a short history, and unsurprisingly most studies have focused on the potential for collisions. Risk for population impacts may exist to soaring migrants such as raptors with K-strategic life-history characteristics. Soaring migrants display strong dependence on thermals and updrafts and an affinity to land areas and islands during their migration, a behaviour that creates corridors where raptors move across narrow straits and sounds and are attracted to islands. Several migration corridors for soaring birds overlap with the development regions for marine wind farms in NW Europe. However, no empirical data have yet been available on avoidance or attraction rates and behavioural reactions of soaring migrants to marine wind farms. Based on a post-construction monitoring study, we show that all raptor species displayed a significant attraction behaviour towards a wind farm. The modified migratory behaviour was also significantly different from the behaviour at nearby reference sites. The attraction was inversely related to distance to the wind farm and was primarily recorded during periods of adverse wind conditions. The attraction behaviour suggests that migrating raptor species are far more at risk of colliding with wind turbines at sea than hitherto assessed.

Henrik Skov, Mark Desholm, Stefan Heinänen, Johnny A. Kahlert, Bjarke Laubek, Niels Einar Jensen, Ramūnas Žydelis, Bo Præstegaard Jensen

Published 21 December 2016.
Biology Letters, volume 12, issue 12
DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2016.0804

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Date added:  November 8, 2016
Environment, Europe, Regulations, U.K.Print storyE-mail story

Turbid wakes associated with offshore wind turbines observed with Landsat 8

Author:  Vanhellemont, Quinten; and Ruddick, Kevin

Abstract:
In the last decade, the number of offshore wind farms has increased rapidly. Offshore wind farms are typically constructed in near-shore, shallow waters. These waters can be highly productive or provide nursery grounds for fish. EU legislation requires assessment of the environmental impact of the wind farms. The effects on hard and soft substrate fauna, seabirds and marine mammals are most frequently considered. Here we present Landsat-8 imagery that reveals the impact of offshore wind farms on suspended sediments. Turbid wakes of individual turbines are observed that are aligned with tidal currents. They are 30–150 m wide, and several km in length. The environmental impact of these wakes and the source of the suspended material are still unclear, but the wake size warrants further study. The underwater light field will be affected by increased suspended sediments and the turbid wakes could significantly impact sediment transport and downstream sedimentation. The question of whether such features can be detected by other remote sensors is addressed by a theoretical analysis of the signal:noise specification for the Operational Land Imager (OLI), the Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM +), the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR/3), the Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), the Spinning Enhanced Visible and Infrared Imager (SEVIRI), the Flexible Combined Imager (FCI) and the Multispectral Instrument (MSI) and by a demonstration of the impact of processing OLI data for different spatial resolutions.

offshore-wind-turbid-wakes

Quinten Vanhellemont and Kevin Ruddick
Royal Belgian Institute for Natural Sciences (RBINS), Operational Directorate Natural Environment, Brussels, Belgium

Remote Sensing of Environment Volume 145, 5 April 2014, Pages 105–115
doi: 10.1016/j.rse.2014.01.009

Download original document: “Turbid wakes associated with offshore wind turbines observed with Landsat 8”

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Date added:  October 25, 2016
Noise, Regulations, U.K.Print storyE-mail story

Review of the evidence on the response to amplitude modulation from wind turbines

Author:  WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff

This review was commissioned by the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) in spring 2015 and finalised before DECC became part of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in July 2016.

The research has reviewed the evidence on the response to amplitude modulation (AM) in relation to wind turbines. It was undertaken by a research team lead by WSP Parsons Brinkerhoff, who are responsible for the overall editorial content of the report, and supported by three independent external reviewers.

The review considered the robustness of relevant dose-response relationships and how, in a policy context, the level(s) of AM in a sample of noise data should be interpreted. In particular, it considered at what point AM causes a significant adverse impact and has recommended how excessive AM from wind turbines might be controlled through the use of an appropriate planning condition.

The final report addresses comments raised by three peer reviewers, appointed by DECC. The reviewers, from Denmark and the Netherlands, are experts in noise and health.

While this research does not represent planning guidance, BEIS encourages developers and planning authorities in England to consider this research when determining if an AM condition would be appropriate.

The contractor worked closely with the Institute of Acoustics’ AM working group, who in August 2016 recommended a preferred metric and methodology for quantifying and assessing the level of AM in a sample of wind turbine noise data [click here for review from the Independent Noise Working Group].

Download: “Wind Turbine AM Review Phase 1 Report”

Download: “Wind Turbine AM Review Phase 2 Report”

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Date added:  October 3, 2016
Noise, Regulations, U.K.Print storyE-mail story

Independent Noise Working Group Research and Recommendations

Author:  Independent Noise Working Group

Initial Findings from the INWG Research

INWG Recommendations to National Government

  1. Replace ETSU. Replace the use of ETSU, as recommended by the Northern Ireland Assembly report January 2015, with a procedure based on the principles of BS4142: 2014. This will bring wind turbine noise assessment into line with other industrial noise controls. New guidance of this type should be formulated in a Code of Practice that sets out a BS4142: 2014 type methodology that reflects noise character and relates impact to the actual background noise level and not an artificial average.
  2. Introduce an Effective AM Planning Condition. Based on the experience at Cotton Farm wind farm in Cambridgeshire, where there has been long term professional and independent noise monitoring, we recommend an effective AM planning condition should be part of every wind turbine planning approval unless there is clear evidence it is not needed. For assessing and controlling wind turbine noise AM, it is recommended that:
    1. Where wind turbine noise level and character require simultaneous assessment then BS4142:2014 should be used. The rated wind farm noise level should not exceed +10dB above the background noise level.
    2. Where only wind turbine noise AM requires assessment then a Den Brook type planning condition should be used.
  3. Continuous Noise Monitoring. Continuous noise monitoring of wind turbines should become a standard planning condition for all wind turbine planning approvals as recommended in the Northern Ireland Assembly report, January 2015. This should be funded by the wind turbine operator but controlled by the Local planning Authority (LPA) with the noise data made openly available to ensure transparency. The Cotton Farm community noise monitor describes an example of how this can be achieved. See: http://www.masenv.co.uk/~remote_data/
  4. Further Research into the Impact of Low Frequency Noise. There is a need to commission independent research to measure and determine the impact of low-frequency noise on those residents living in close proximity to individual turbines and wind farms as recommended in the Northern Ireland Assembly report, January 2015.
  5. Issues of Ethics, Conflict of Interest & Independence. The government should deal decisively with the ethical issues surrounding the Institute of Acoustics (IoA) wind turbine noise working groups. Government departments should disassociate themselves from the IoA until conflict of interest and ethics issues are resolved and full transparency is restored.

By courtesy of Chris Heaton-Harris, MP for Daventry

Download reports and publications:

The Fundamentals of Amplitude Modulation (AM) of Wind Turbine Noise
Review of Reference Literature
AM Evidence Review
Study of Noise and AM Complaints Received by Local Planning Authorities in England
Excessive AM, Wind Turbine Noise, Sleep and Health
Den Brook Planning Conditions
Draft AM Planning Condition, part 1
Draft AM Planning Condition, part 2
Legal Remedies
Legal Issues Relating to Shell Companies
Control of AM Noise Using Statutory Nuisance
Informative: Wind Turbine Noise AM and Its Control
Test of Institute of Acoustics AM Working Group Methodologies [not yet published]
Review of Institute of Acoustics Noise Working Groups
Cotton Farm Monitor Experience
Report Summary
Terms of Reference
Presentation to DECC Minister of State by Richard Cox
Presentation to DECC Minister of State by Sarah Large
Presentation to Institute of Acoustics by Richard Cox

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