Renewable energy: climate crisis 'may have triggered faster wind speeds'

(The Guardian, 18 Nov 2019) Windfarms could be able to generate more energy due to phenomenon, says report.

The global climate crisis could lead to more renewable electricity being generated by spurring faster wind speeds for the world’s growing number of windfarms, according to research.

Scientists have discovered that the world’s shifting ocean circulation patterns may have triggered a rapid increase in wind speeds over the last 10 years.

The international research team analysed data from 9,000 international weather stations since the late 1970s and found that wind speeds had unexpectedly increased after a three-decade slowdown.

Dr Zhenzhong Zeng, a professor at Princeton University and the lead author of the report, said the research team was surprised by the findings after setting out to study the slowdown in global wind speeds.

The faster than expected wind speeds could help increase the amount of renewable electricity generated by each turbine by more than a third to 3.3m kilowatt hours (kWh) by 2024.

Zeng said the unexpected acceleration is likely to have played a bigger role in improving the efficiency of windfarms in the US than technological innovations.

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The Guardian, 18 Nov 2019: Renewable energy: climate crisis 'may have triggered faster wind speeds'