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Nature conservation as a driver in wind energy scenarios

 
: Gauglitz, P.; Schicketanz, S.; Pape, C.

:
Volltext ()

Energy, Sustainability and Society 9 (2019), Art. 47, 12 S.
ISSN: 2192-0567
Englisch
Zeitschriftenaufsatz, Elektronische Publikation
Fraunhofer IEE ()

Abstract
Background
Germany has set ambitious goals for the reduction of greenhouse gases. The decarbonisation of the energy system has been in focus. An important means to achieve this is the increased utilisation of wind energy. The growth of wind power entails changes not only in the electrical system but also in the landscape and environment. Prospectively, scenarios will have to consider a wide range of aspects, not only economics and technology but also nature conservation and social affairs. The authors are participating in the research study “Szenarien für den Ausbau der erneuerbaren Energien aus Naturschutzsicht”, funded by the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, which examines the possibilities of integrating nature conservation into the development of scenarios.
Methods
For aspects of nature conservation to be taken into account in scenario development, a multi-stage methodology has been developed to assess the conflict risk of wind energy and nature conservation throughout Germany. To ensure comparability of the scenarios, all of them are based on the same general framework consisting of fixed excluded areas, the same method of detail allocation and the same overall expected energy output. The “nature conservation” driver is integrated in the form of a nationwide comparative assessment of risk levels. The mapping of spatially differentiated risk levels for wind energy has been achieved in a GIS-based and discursive process.
Results
The results show that nature conservation can be addressed properly in scenario-building. Here, the method of multi-criterion scenario-building itself, with its focus on including nature conservation as one of several drivers determining the spatial distribution of wind turbines, is a major result. The authors have developed specific scenarios that mainly address questions of landscape and nature conservation. Out of the four generic scenarios presented for the year 2035, two have nature conservation as their main driver, whereas the other two consider energy-economic drivers only. Examining these scenarios provides insight into the influence of each driver. For example, adding nature conservation as the main driver (highest priority) reduces the specific conflict risk by 26.1%, while at the same time only a relatively small increase in wind turbines is required (+12.5% in numbers, +2.3% in installed power capacity).
Conclusion
The methods developed here provide a driver for allocating wind power plants to reduce conflicts in high-risk areas. Furthermore, using the same spatial distribution of risk levels makes it possible to subsequently rate the scenarios from a conservation perspective. The method developed here provides the means to analyse trade-offs between relevant drivers. The “nature conservation” scenarios show a relatively small additional demand for wind turbines but a greater amount of avoided conflict risk.

: http://publica.fraunhofer.de/dokumente/N-630244.html