Wind turbines at the wind farm, Cape Bridgewater near Portland, on Victoria's west coast, Australia

Wind turbines at the wind farm, Cape Bridgewater near Portland, on Victoria's west coast, Australia
Wind turbines at the wind farm, Cape Bridgewater near Portland, on Victoria's west coast, Australia. There are 29 2 mw wind turbines at the Cape Bridgewater wind farm. They dominate the landscape. July 2013

While we were there we took the time to observe the effects of the turbines on the environment. Much is said about the low frequency noise, less about the effects of moving shadows. Both are present.

There are two noises that predominate. The long slow whoosh, whoosh, whoosh ... as the blades move through the air, and the continuous grind of the gearboxes in the nacelles high above. It must be remembered that each of these nacelles is a 30 tonne industrial installation. The combined noise of the 25 turbines (one was broken and minus its fan; three others were not working) is significant.

The other noticeable effect was the shadows of the blades moving constantly over the ground. We only noticed this after a while of being there, but we did find it somewhat disconcerting. In the early morning or late afternoon these shadows can be a long way - kilometres - from the turbines themselves. It would be interesting to see a study of the effects, if any, of the shadows movement on wildlife in the area.

Copyright © Willem Schultink

If you would love to visit places like this, but have mobility issues, you might like to visit the Overlander Mobility website.