Agriculture and Agribusiness
Farmers and landowners are in a unique position to benefit from the growth in the wind industry and, with traditional agriculture increasingly volatile, many have diversified.
To tap into this market, farmers have two main choices:
- The option to lease their land to wind farm developers – a de-risked solution with no additional labour or expense required but with limited control over turbine type or size.
- Or they could finance their own turbine project – a greater overall project cost and initial risks of securing planning permission & grid connection but ensuring significantly greater returns over the life of the turbine. With the demise of the FiTs and ROCs this may not be financially viable for many at present unless on site energy requirements make a project more attractive by reducing imported energy costs.
Turbines take a limited amount of space and, given that the windiest sites are often the least agriculturally productive, have little adverse impact on existing farming operations.
There are also opportunities for the farmers, members of the community and local organisations to invest in their own green energy project providing a benefit to the whole community.