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Wind energy in the natural and social environment


The proposal is expected to address all the following aspects:

  • Develop and promote the use of validated models and guidelines as a tool for enhanced societal engagement. Further, it should also demonstrate how participatory processes can enhance value creation and achieve higher social acceptability of wind energy;
  • Assess through validated models how wind turbines impact the local environment (noise, impact on soil or sea beds, visual effect, effects on animal life and other species). In addition, it should also assess, if applicable, how offshore wind turbines (and fixed or floating substructures) impact the local marine environment (currents, waves, upwelling, and sediment transport). Finally, it should help to identify the best areas for deployment and to develop new designs and/or enhanced control strategies of wind turbines to address potential impacts;
  • Develop a forum where regulators, industry, and local communities can exchange information and provide input to one another. Further, it should also identify the effect that the implemented models have on promoting wind energy;
  • Address how the impact of different wind energy innovations and applications (onshore, offshore, floating, and airborne) is seen by the general public and the local actors.

This topic requires the effective contribution of Social Science and Humanities (SSH) disciplines and the involvement of SSH experts, institutions as well as the inclusion of relevant SSH expertise, in order to produce meaningful and significant effects enhancing the societal impact of the related research activities. Social innovations should also be considered, notably as new tools, ideas and methods leading to active citizen engagement and as drivers of social change, social ownership, and new social practices.