KIRKSVILLE, Mo. – Recently, wind farms have been a major topic for communities in northeast Missouri.
There is now a wind farm located in northern Adair County and southern Schuyler County.
There is also plans for a wind farm to possibly be constructed in Knox County.
However, meteorologists have conducted research over the past few years to determine if there are big changes in the climate for communities near wind farms.
In particular, they have found that there are some subtle changes in the temperature of these communities.
Storm Team 3 Meteorologist Matt Gunn asked Rich Kinney, a Warning Coordination Meteorologist for the National Weather Service in the Quad Cities, to explain if there is any truth behind this research.
“There’s been ongoing research in this department,” Kinney said. “And with the way the wind turbines operate, in mixing the air at different layers in the atmosphere, that could have an impact on temperatures. So, locally you could see some impacts on temperatures and frost formation right around the wind farms themselves.”
Kinney also told KTVO that Iowa State University has recently done research on this topic.
They found that wind farms in central Iowa have had a positive impact on the crops surrounding them.
This is due to the change in temperature, which has helped prolonged the growing season.
That allows the first frost of the fall to be delayed.
However, Kinney would like to reiterate that research is still in the early stages.
It is still too early to determine the widespread changes that may be caused by wind farms.