Wind Farms – Where and how to put them?
This paper aims at measuring preferences for attributes related to the establishment of wind power farms among the general public in Sweden. The method applied is a choice experiment where people are asked to choose between two hypothetical wind farms, each characterized by different attributes. Five attributes are included in the experiment: (i) type of landscape, (ii) ownership, (iii) the extent to which the local public is invited to participate in the planning process, (iv) the choice to transfer revenue to the society in a pre-specified way, and (v) a monetary cost in terms of an additional electricity certificate fee. The results are based on the survey responses from 1500 individuals and show that all attributes have a significant impact on the choice of the preferred wind farm. The results indicate that the electricity consumers in Sweden are more likely to accept the higher costs (through the renewable electricity certificate fee) if; (a) wind power farms in areas used for recreational purposes are substantially avoided, (b) if the establishment is anchored by whole or partly ownership in the local community and, (c) if the local population is involved in the planning and implementation process. Our policy simulation exercise shows that respondents are willing to pay a higher electricity fee corresponding to about four öre to avoid wind farms located in the mountainous area and to avoid private ownership. People consider extended consultation processes and earmarked transfers for nature conservation to the local community as changes for the better, while the opposition towards wind energy in the mountainous areas and privately owned wind farms dominates the positive effects from consultation and transfers.
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