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Inland revenue

The EU has grand ambitions for wind energy, aiming to install 100,000 new or replacement turbines by 2050. Recent developments in individual member nations, however, suggest that expansion on this scale will not be straightforward, particularly as a whole set of planning and public relations problems remain to be solved. Will Moffitt talks to Peter Enevoldsen, professor of renewable energy at Aarhus University, about the opportunities and obstacles facing European wind in the coming decades.

Scrapyard challenge

Wind power is a vanguard technology for a greener future, but with most blades being made out of composite materials, the majority of turbines are not fully recyclable. Will Moffitt talks to Dr Lawrence Bank, principal investigator for engineering at Re-Wind, about the association’s mission to find ingenious ways of reusing turbines, and Richard Cochrane, professor of renewable energy at Exeter University, about building fully recyclable blades for the future.

A safer sea

Whales and other marine mammal species are highly sensitive to anthropogenic sound, like that made by pile-driving during the installation of new offshore turbines. Several wind farms in the north-east US, however, have taken an alternative approach that better protects these creatures. Greg Noone talks to Dr Howard Rosenbaum, director of the ‘Ocean Giants’ programme at the Wildlife Conservation Society, and Sophie Hartfield, head of US permitting at Ørsted, about these new mitigation strategies.

Winds of change

In 2015, SPARTA became the world’s first data-sharing platform for offshore wind farms. Since then, valuable lessons have been learned by wind energy companies about how to optimise operational performance. Irenie Forshaw talks to data and digitalisation team leader at ORE Catapult Conaill Soraghan and manager for operational excellence at Equinor Mona Riis about the platform’s latest insights and plans for global expansion.