Two separate studies looking at how wind farms affect house prices have drawn contrasting conclusions.
The impact of wind farms on communities has been debated, with government proposing giving locals more say on developments.
One of the pieces of research from the London School of Economics (LSE) suggests that wind farms can reduce house prices by as much as 12% when they are within 2km of the development. The report states, “Wind farm developments reduce prices in locations where the turbines are visible, relative where they are not visible, the effects are casual.”
The further away the wind farm the less the effects the study says, with houses further than 8km being relatively unaffected, although the range varies depending on the size of the development.
Stephen Gibbons, author of the report, writes, “As might be expected, small wind farms have no impact beyond 4km, where as the largest wind farms (20+ turbines) reduce prices by 12% within 2km, and reduce prices by small amounts right out to 14km.”
In contrast, a study published last month came to a different conclusion. The Centre for Economic and Business Research (Cebr) and RenewableUK concluded that the presence of wind farms has no significant effects on average local property prices within 5km of the site.
This study examined data from over 82,000 property transactions and found that local house prices in areas where there are wind farms continued as would have been expected if there were no wind farms. There were no negative effects at either the planning, construction or completion phase, it added.
Maria McCaffery, chief executive of RenewablesUK, said, “[The research] shows that claims that wind farms might have a negative effect on house prices are unfounded.
“In fact, wind farms generate significant economic benefits for local communities, by creating local jobs and providing local contracts in rural areas where they’re needed most. In addition to generating clean and sustainable energy, they also provide tens of thousands of pounds every year in community funds to improve local infrastructure and much-needed community facilities which help to maintain local property prices.”
The findings suggest that further studies need to be conducted in the area to assess the full effects and allow the renewable technology to be fully integrated into the UK’s energy mix.
Blue&Green Tomorrow website: www.blueandgreentomorrow.com