1 Will our electricity supply be reliable and will brown prices be affected?

The turbine connects directly into your electrical system and it works alongside your existing electricity supplier. There is a seamless transition between the turbine supply and the grid supply, ensuring there is no disruption to your power. Your current energy purchasing arrangements do not need to change. Our experience to date has shown that clients' brown electricity prices are not adversely affected by the introduction of wind energy.

2 What’s good about brownfield sites?

Planning regulations for turbines below 5MW are simpler than those of a larger wind farm. Achieving planning permission and establishing a grid connection are the typical obstacles for a large wind farm. However, this is much easier for industrial or commercial sites which often benefit from:

  • fewer residential dwellings nearby
  • less impact on the visual landscape
  • existing electrical grid connections
  • existing access roads
  • few ecological or heritage concerns

3 How much electricity could a wind turbine supply us?

A 2MW turbine at a reasonably windy site will produce 5 million units of electricity p.a. (5,000 MW hours); enough to supply the needs of over 1,000 households. The turbine will supply you with all of its generation; any electricity that you don’t use can be exported to the distribution network. The level and pattern of your existing electricity usage will determine what proportion will be replaced by wind energy.

4 How does Wind Direct recover its investment costs?

We recover our investment costs through selling the electricity to you and also via two financial incentives put in place for renewable energy generators. The Government’s Renewables Obligation requires electricity suppliers to purchase a proportion of their electricity from renewable sources in return for Renewables Obligation Certificates (ROCs), or face a penalty. Together with exemption from the Climate Change Levy (CCL), these two incentives enhance the value of renewable energy.

5 Why do you need a 25 year lease?

The lifespan of a typical wind turbine is 22-25 years, so we aim to secure a lease that gives time to recover the initial investment and make a reasonable return on the asset. At the end of the lease we remove the turbine and restore the land to its original use, at our own cost. The scrap/recycling value of the turbine at the end of its life more than covers the decommissioning cost.

6 What happens if our organisation moves location?

We built a turbine in Cambridgeshire which was due to supply electricity to a foundry. The business stopped trading at that location, but our turbine remains in operation; the electricity generated is now exported to the distribution network.

7 Which turbine is best?

The turbine is the single biggest project cost and correct selection is vital. Different turbines provide different yields in different wind conditions. They also differ in size, power, noise, and maintenance needs; so turbine selection is very specific to your site. The turbine needs careful maintenance to operate productively over 20 years, so our knowledge of how different turbines perform is highly relevant. We are not tied to any turbine manufacturer and select the best machine for your site.

8 Are turbine lead times an issue?

They can be but we mitigate against delays by:

  • bulk purchasing of turbines through our wider group
  • existing framework agreements through joint venture partners
  • long-standing relationships with turbine manufacturers