Interesting Facts

  • A wind turbine generates electricity from the power of the wind.
  • When the wind blows, the turbine blades turn a generator inside the turbine that converts the movement into electricity. That power is then transmitted through underground cables.
  • So a wind turbine is rather like a giant fan in reverse!
  • Wind turbines generate electricity from wind speeds of 4 to 5 metres per second (10 miles an hour) upwards. They only stop working when wind speeds reach severe gale force, at about 25 metres per second (50+ miles/hour).
  • Currently the fastest growing source of renewable energy in the world.
  • Scotland is the Windiest place in Europe.
  • There are over 1000 wind turbines in the UK.
  • A 1.8MW turbine supplies enough electricity to power 1,000 homes.
  • One wind turbine produces enough electricity each year to run a computer for 1620 years!
  • A wind turbine will last for about 20-25 years with some part replacement required in its life time.
  • It is predicted that onshore wind farms will provide about 5% of Britain’s electricity by 2010.
  • The largest turbine in the world is 20 stories high and has blades the length of a football field.


  • Wind energy is freely available.
  • Potential for large scale electricity generation.
  • Low running costs.
  • No waste or pollution from power generation.
  • Taking down a wind farm is straightforward.
  • Wind farms can become tourist attractions.
  • The land can still be used for farming.

Down Sides

  • Difficulties with connecting to the national grid
  • No wind, no power
  • A speed of at least 4m per second is required
  • Can interfere with radar

Local Applications

  • Glens of Foudland Wind Farm in Aberdeenshire.
  • Boyndie Windfarm
  • Talisman Offshore Project, Moray Firth
  • Mackies Wind Turbine.
  • Proposed Aberdeen Offshore Wind Farm.