School children from three South Wales schools celebrated the 20 year anniversary of Taff Ely Wind Farm with a special open day visit that also coincided with Global Wind Day, 15th June 2013.
RWE npower renewables, one of the country’s most experienced renewable energy companies, organised the event to help educate primary school children about renewable energy, its power and how wind can be part of a stable, clean energy future.
The open day was attended by 150 primary school children from local schools, Llanharan Primary, Dolau Primary, Hendreforgan Primary along with teachers and staff of RWE npower renewables.
As part of their visit, the children participated in a wind energy educational talk from the RWE NRL team, followed by a site visit to the wind farm, where they witnessed the sheer power and scale of a wind turbine up close.
Simon Ling, Onshore Operations Engineer for RWE NRL, then explained how the wind farm was built, how it produces energy and how this energy is transported away to the National Grid and around the country.
To cap off the visit, the pupils from all three schools were photopraphed with special pledge banners, signed by the children at their schools, to formally give their support to energy efficiency both at school and in their homes.
The iconic Taff Ely Wind Farm is one of RWE npower renewables’ (RWE NRL) oldest wind farms, and has been operating since 1993. It has consistently delivered an excellent wind resource, and is now looking forward to a new lease of life. RWE NRL acquired the operating wind farm in 1998 and will repower the site, replacing the old wind farm with a new one consisting of seven larger, more effective turbines and almost doubling its energy generation.
RWE NRL has also pledged an increased community benefit fund and, depending on the final installed capacity of the site, this would see index linked annual payments of up to £87,500(1) invested into local communities over the operational lifetime of the wind farm, which is expected to be up to 25 years.
Simon Ling, said: “We were very proud to welcome so many school children to Taff Ely Wind Farm. The young people who visited the site are part of the generation that will need to meet the challenge of producing the energy that we all consume from sources other than the traditional ones we’ve used for the last century.
“Onshore wind farms have a crucial role to play in helping to meet this challenge, and the revenues that the Taff Ely Repowering scheme will generate for community projects will also mean that it will make a positive difference to the local area for decades to come.”
Ahead of the visit, children at all three schools have been actively involved in recycling and conservation; developing an understanding that water, fossil fuel and land space are not always renewable.
Rebecca Lomas, nine, from DolauPrimary school said “ The reason why I like wind farms is that they don’t add to the pollution of the planet in the way that burning coal and gas do. The sun warms the air which rises and cold air comes rushing in and that creates wind so as long as we have the sun we can have wind farms on our mountains”
Niamb Thomas, nine, from Dolau Primary said “ Today I have learnt that we shouldn’t waste energy. Electricity isn’t free but nature does give us the wind, which is free, so we can produce electricity without polluting the air we breath. At home I will make an effort to switch off my bedroom lights when I’m not in the room”
All three schools that took part in the visit have a strong commitment to understanding sustainable and renewable energy sources and have integrated the subject into their curriculums.