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The economics of visual disamenity reductions of offshore wind farms—Review and suggestions from an emerging field

  • Ladenburg, Jacob
  • Lutzeyer, Sanja

The offshore wind power generation market is currently experiencing large growth rates on a global scale and investments exceeding several billion euro are being made. From a welfare economic point of view there is a non-trivial economic trade-off between offshore wind generation costs and the visual impacts from offshore wind farms. Offshore wind farms close to the shore generate cheaper electricity, but also cause higher levels of visual impacts compared to locations at larger distances. In the present paper we carry out a review of the stated preference studies that have elicited the demand for visual disamenity reduction from offshore wind farms. The review has three objectives: (a) to present the results of the different surveys; (b) to explore the more technical parts of the different surveys; and (c) to present the frontiers in the assessment of the demand for visual disamenity reductions associated with offshore wind farm locations. The paper is based on the results from five different studies. The review indicates that locations of offshore wind farms which are close to the shore generate significant welfare losses and that these can be reduced by locating the wind farms at more distant locations. The results also show that the welfare economic costs vary in terms of a range of socio demographic characteristics, experience with wind turbines and recreational activities. Finally, the review suggests that the welfare impacts related to the spatial distribution of the wind farms, intergenerational effects and experience with wind turbines are potential areas that would be beneficial to explore in future studies.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews.

Volume (Year): 16 (2012)
Issue (Month): 9 ()
Pages: 6793-6802

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