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Do Wind Farms Change Local Weather Patterns?

Wind turbines provide a large proportion of the world’s renewable energy, yet they also face opposition, mostly due to claims that they cause deaths to birds that fly through the wind farms and are swatted out of the air by the huge spinning blades. Another point has recently been discovered which could be used by the anti-wind lobby; that it changes local weather patterns, enough to even change local habitats.

A study by Fernando Portée-Agel, from the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne in Switzerland, which was published in the journal Environmental Research Letters, has looked into the effects of the down drafts created by wind turbines on the local environment.

Related article: Has Belgium Cracked the Problem of Storing Wind Power Electricity?

Along with his colleagues he created a scale model of a wind farm inside a wind tunnel and then measured the changes in temperature and humidity as a result of the turbines activities and their impact on the movement of natural wind in the area.

When positioned in neat rows the downdrafts created by each individual turbine begin to superimpose one on top of the other, multiplying the effects to such a degree that it changes the way heat and moisture is lost from the land.

This can cause positive changes, such as in Iowa, USA, where crops planted below the turbines are kept cool during the summer; or negative changes where the moisture is removed from the land which dries and causes the crops to wilt.

By. Joao Peixe of Oilprice.com



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  • chris moran on April 22 2016 said:
    I am a golf course superintendent and i have seen wind mills break up storms heading toward my golf course hundreds of times to the point were it has made me have to water twice as much as before the wind mills were put in you can actually see it on radar where the storm breaks up at the line where the wind mills are very frustrating and there is nothing i can do about it i live in northeast Pennsylvania they were put in 10 years ago and its been a problem ever since

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