Latent dynamics in siting onshore wind energy farms: A case of a wind farm in South Africa

Paul A. Adedeji, Stephen Akinlabi, Nkosinathi Madushele, Obafemi O. Olatunji

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Siting a renewable energy facility entails several latent but influential quantitative and qualitative variables. Empirical and analytical models often fail to unravel the dynamics of these variables however; prior knowledge of their existence and dynamics offers knowledge-based decision-making during the plant siting process. This article examines the significance and dynamics of land ownership, avian environment, and renewable energy policies. Asides the literature survey, review of government policy, and regulations, a semi-structured interviewbased method was used in this study using a wind power plant in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa as a case study. A qualitative content analysis was used for response analysis. From our findings, dynamics around land ownership could be complex depending on the land category and existing contracts between a landowner and the developer. Also, an in-extensive study of avian habitat in seemingly viable land could lead to forced-downtime of wind turbine generators at periods where production is notably high. Lastly, careful examination of prevailing renewable energy policies and a projection on future policies culminates into the viability of the investment. Trivializing these variables before site development could lead to investment loss through low-productivity or force-majeure in the investment. On the overall, the proposed solutions to these barriers can be useful for wind developers in solving similar problems in other renewable energy resources both in South Africa and other countries.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationASME 2020 Power Conference, POWER 2020, collocated with the 2020 International Conference on Nuclear Engineering
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
ISBN (Electronic)9780791883747
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Event2019 Canadian Society for Civil Engineering Annual Conference, CSCE 2019 - Laval, Canada
Duration: 12 Jun 201915 Jun 2019

Publication series

NameAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers, Power Division (Publication) POWER


Conference2019 Canadian Society for Civil Engineering Annual Conference, CSCE 2019


  • Land ownership
  • Latent dynamics
  • Renewable energy
  • South Africa
  • Wind farm.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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