Science - June 24, 2004

Wageningen UR to build wind farm in Lelystad

The first six windmills should be turning by the end of this year in the wind farm that Wageningen UR plans to build in Lelystad. If the plan goes ahead a total of 28 windmills will eventually be erected and Wageningen UR will become a net producer of electricity, and may even earn money from the enterprise.

“The Lelystad town council has just let us know that it has passed the application for change of use, and we already have permission to build. Construction of the windmills can start in the summer,” says Gert Kolstee, who works at the Animal Sciences Group and is one of the initiators of the wind farm. The plan for a wind farm originated about ten years ago, and since then Kolstee has collaborated with his colleague Henk van der Meer and Ton van Scheppingen from Applied Plant Research to get others interested in building the wind farm. “I was called Don Quixote by some, but now we’re almost there, it’s a great feeling,” comments Kolstee. The plans were presented to the Executive Board in April and have been approved, although they are still waiting for the final signature on the contract.

In the first phase, six WUR-windmills will be built along the Lage Vaart canal in Lelystad. Two extra will be built at a later stage. In addition, there are applications to build another two wind farms of ten windmills each along the A6 motorway. Kolstee has calculated that the 28 windmills should produce an annual total of 80 million kilowatt hours, which will be more than enough to provide Wageningen UR with all the electricity it needs (65 million kilowatt hours per year).

Gert van Maanen

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