Ardrossan Wind Farm
The 24 megawatt (MW) Ardrossan Wind Farm in Ardrossan, North Ayrshire, Scotland was officially opened on August 10, 2004. The Vestas factory in Argyll, which now employs more than 200 people, has supplied the wind turbines for the Airtricity development. The company is providing access to the site for schools and other interested community groups to learn more about wind power.
The Guardian has reported that the Ardrossan Wind Farm has been "overwhelmingly accepted by local people". Instead of spoiling the landscape, locals believe it has enhanced the area: "The turbines are impressive looking, bring a calming effect to the town and, contrary to the belief that they would be noisy, we have found them to be silent workhorses".
In the Hurricane Bawbag storms of December 2011, one of the turbines of the wind farm catastrophically failed in a ball of fire, widely reported by local media. While widely cited by anti-wind and global-warming denial groups as evidence of wind power's ineffectiveness, it is worth noting that the nearby Hunterston nuclear plant was offline for 54 hours as a result of the same windstorm due to downing of transmission lines. Only 1.2 MW from one of the 13 wind turbines was offline, insignificant compared to the major generation loss. Statistically wind turbines have a 0.001% chance of catching fire once in their 20-25 year lifespans.
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