It was back in 2008 that planning permission was granted for the erection of wind turbines at East Midlands Airport. At the time the four turbines were considered capable of generating 10% of the site’s energy and produce up to 225 kw of electricity each, enough to power 503 houses a year.
Work has finally started in preparation for the installation of the first two wind turbines to be installed, thought to be the first at a UK airport, and due to be installed in March. Ground clearance and foundation work has started in readiness for the turbines, which will produce about 5% of the airport’s electricity.
They will stand 45m (148 ft) high and the rotor blades will have a radius of about 14m ( 46 ft).
The remaining two turbines will be added at a later date.
This level of investment is good to see and will hopefully further enhance the airports place in UK aviation. It is also interesting to note the lead in time for this scheme, it is 3 years since planning was granted and it will be probably 4 years before the entire scheme is in place. With the required drive for renewables in the UK we need to be aware that nothing happens overnight – even more reason to push ahead with schemes like the Clifton one as soon as possible. If not we have no hope of hitting the targets set by the Government in relation to percentage of renewables in use by 2020.