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New plan for wind turbines in Wallonia: bigger, more powerful and with the possible participation of citizens and municipalities

  • Post category:Economy News
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For 2030, the production target for the Walloon wind power sector has been raised to 6,200 GWh. The previous plan dated from 2019 and planned to reach 4,600 GWh in 2030. To achieve the new objective, the rules in force must be modified to take into account current, more efficient technologies, communicates the office of Minister Philippe Henry, Walloon Minister of Energy, in charge of the reform.

“Wallonia suffers from a general technological lag in terms of its fleet of wind turbines”, we see at Cabinet Henry. It is particularly in terms of the height of the masts that we must do better in order to take better advantage of the increases in power available on the market and to have better profitability of the energy produced.

The frame of reference for the installation of wind turbine masts is therefore simplified and updated.

From now on, the development of renewable energies constitutes “overriding public interest” and energy independence becomes “an objective of general interest”.

The distance from the masts to the habitat is thus adapted. The minimum distance between the mast of a wind turbine and the residential area is set at 500 meters to which is added half the height of the wind turbine (mast + blade). This is an evolution compared to the current situation which provides for a distance of 600 meters. This should also pave the way for taller wind turbines.

For an isolated dwelling, the fixed distance of 400 meters between the wind turbine and the dwelling is maintained.

Currently, a wind turbine installation project must include at least five towers. From now on, an existing park can be replaced by fewer wind turbines if we install taller and more powerful wind turbines whose production capacity will be at least equivalent.

The duration of the procedure leading to the final granting of permits will also be reduced. It is a recommendation from Europe which wants to limit the duration of procedures, the number of appeals and requests for exemptions.

The planning permit will be granted for thirty years, against twenty currently to extend the operating life of the wind turbines installed.