Gwynt y Môr Wind Farm

wind turbines

Gwynt y Môr is the second largest offshore windfarm in the world. (Photo credit: philipbird123/Fotolia)

Gwynt y Môr (which translates to “wind of the sea” in English) is the second largest offshore wind farm in the world. It is located about 13 kilometers (8 miles) off the coast of north Wales near Colwyn Bay and covers an area of 80 square kilometers (about 30 square miles).

Construction on the wind farm started in 2012 and power production began in late 2013. In June 2015, the wind farm became fully operational when all 160 turbines began to produce electricity. The wind farm cost a total of £2 billion (about $2.6 billion) to construct.

A wind turbine produces energy when wind turns the turbine’s three propeller-shaped blades around a rotor. The rotor is connected to a main shaft, which spins a generator to make electricity. Each turbine that is part of the Gwynt y Môr offshore wind farm can produce 3.6 megawatts of electricity. Together, the entire wind farm produces 576 megawatts of electricity, which is enough energy to power 400,000 homes, or 1/3 of the households in Wales. This wind farm alone is expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 1.7 million tons.

“This offshore wind project will generate enough clean electricity to power hundreds of thousands of homes and will support 100 long term, skilled engineering jobs, giving more people the financial security of a regular pay packet,” Secretary of State for Energy & Climate Change Amber Rudd said at the inauguration of the wind farm. “Gwynt y Môr has a key role to play in our long-term plan to develop a secure energy mix in this country that is diverse and home grown. There really is no better place in the world to invest in offshore wind. With the help of RWE’s £19 million community benefit fund, the development of Gwynt y Môr offshore wind farm will make a real difference to local hard-working families as well as bringing economic and environmental benefits to the north Wales region.”

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Country: United Kingdom
Location: Wales is part of the United Kingdom. It is also made up of England, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. The United Kingdom is located in Western Europe, between the North Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea; and to the northwest of France.
Area: 243,610 sq km (land and water) (slightly smaller than Oregon)
Climate: The climate of the United Kingdom is temperate.
Terrain: The terrain of the United Kingdom features mostly rugged hills and low mountains and level-to-rolling plains in east and southeast.
Natural Resources: Arable land, clay, chalk, coal, gold, gypsum, iron ore, lead, limestone, natural gas, petroleum, potash, salt, silica sand, slate, tin, zinc
Economics: $2.788 trillion (est. 2016)
Environmental Issues: Continues to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; by 2005 the government reduced the amount of industrial and commercial waste disposed of in landfill sites to 85% of 1998 levels and recycled or composted at least 25% of household waste, increasing to 33% by 2015.
Source: CIA – The World Factbook

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