Sustainability Assessment of Wind Farms
Keywords:Sustainability, Windfarm, Renewable energy, New Zealand
Sustainable energy solutions are becoming increasingly popular as the shift away from conventional fuel-based energy solutions continues. Solar, wind, and hydro solutions are the most frequently used renewable energy sources. Modern wind energy solutions are usually constructed using a design of a large three-bladed horizontal axis wind turbine (HAWT). The blades are upwind facing, which helps support the turbine tower against environmental strain and torque ripple produced from the spinning motion of the blades. HAWTs are usually organised into large groups referred to as wind farms. Wind farms are becoming increasingly popular with their ability to adapt to offshore and onshore environments. In both scenarios, wind turbines have a relatively low footprint, with the land underneath still available to be utilised for agricultural and aquacultural purposes. This paper investigates the sustainability of wind farms by surveying a range of papers. The papers will cover the development, construction, and continued operation of wind turbines providing insights into the sustainability issues. Reviewing these papers will allow for an informed revision to the code of sustainability for future implementations of wind farms. The paper concludes with a case study to apply the suggested sustainability code in a contextual scenario and recommendations for the general engineering profession.