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Increase Your Farm Profits With Wind Energy

If you are interested in ways to diversify your farming business, you might want to consider exploring the possibility of using wind energy. If you use wind energy, you will be able to generate electricity for your farm, allowing you to reduce the costs of producing your own food and help your farm maintain profitability.

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Words by: Auto Trader

Published on 13 August 2019 | 0 min read

The fact is that farming land accounts for roughly 75% of the UK’s land cover. Coupled with the increased demand for wind power, farmers could stand to increase their earnings by a significant amount with this type of development plan.
Wind power contributed to a tremendous 18% of UK electricity generation in 2017. Here are some of the considerations and questions that you need to ask before moving forward with this possibility.
Is your farm suitable for wind turbines?
You might be wondering whether your farm is even suitable for wind turbines. One of the easiest ways to explore this option is to look at how land is being used around your farm. If people near you are already using wind turbines, there’s a good chance that your farm is indeed suitable. If there are no cues like this available, it’s important to turn your attention to wind speed. You need wind speeds in your area of roughly 20 feet per second for wind power to be a suitable choice for your farm. However, assuming your land isn’t completely shielded that should be no problem. Remember though wind speeds will change throughout the year so it’s a good idea to get an average reading.
It’s also important that your farm does provide access points for vehicle access. You may need to build larger access points to allow for cranes and trucks to put the pieces in place and build the turbines.
How much land will you need?
This will typically depend on how many turbines you want, how much electricity you need to produce and the amount you are willing to pay. Wind turbines come in a variety of different sizes and you could, theoretically pay for residential wind turbines. However, for the larger options. Such as a 2-megawatt wind turbine, you need about half of a square kilometer. Although, you will be able to use the land around this for farming and therefore it doesn’t take as much space as it first seems.
If you are thinking about building as many as 20 turbines, then you will need roughly 240 acres. However, only one percent of this land will be required for the turbines themselves. The rest will again be available for grazing.
Do you need planning permission?
You do need planning permission and you will also need to consult with stakeholders as well as the neighbors of your farm. The good news is that national planning policies to support the development of wind farms but various considerations do come into effect here such as visual problems and noise pollution. If the project exceeds 50MW then you will be referred automatically to the Department of Trade and Industry.
Can you use the energy on your own farm?
You can use the energy to power your own farm or essentially rent the land out to electricity providers. If you are powering your own farm, you can feed the energy directly into smaller areas around your farm such as electric fences.
How much you can make from having a wind turbine on your farm?
The amount you can earn from a wind farm can differ dramatically. This will depend on demand, wind speed in your area and of course the size of your wind farm. However, many farmers can make a fortune with some earning as much as £60,000. Alternatively, you could invest in one 400 foot turbine and still make £20,000 every year. You can explore the potential for profit on your land before you begin to build and seek planning permission.
What are the benefits of having a wind turbine on your farm?
There are various benefits of having a wind turbine on your farm. If you direct the energy directly into your farm, you’ll be saving costs on your land. If you decide to sell the generated energy, we’ve already discussed the profits you could see. As well as this, investing in wind power will help you become greener and less reliant on the energy grid which is under increased pressure.
What are the cons of having a wind turbine on your farm?
You might be disappointed with the level of animosity you receive from the public when trying to put these plans in place. It can be quite an uphill battle to gain approval. As well as this, you need to be prepared for some disruption to the land however this can quickly be reseeded and then there’s the wait to get things up and running. It will typically take about two years to go from seeking permission to running the turbine.
We hope this helps you decide whether wind energy is the right choice for your farm.

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