According to the Swiss association for the promotion of wind power the consumption becomes significant in the cantons of Jura and Uri and even if the realization of brand new facilities temporarily stalled this should not last.
The significant increase in production in 2011 is due to strong growth in the number of plants in the previous year. This production is 70 million kWh of green electricity, twice in 2010, despite relatively low winds.
Switzerland now has 30 large wind turbines: “it is little compared with other countries, but in two cantons the share of wind in the overall consumption reaches or exceeds 1% now. This is the case in Uri, but especially in Jura, where the wind has covered 4% of needs. In the cantons of Bern and Valais, 0.5% of the electricity consumed was generated by wind”, says Suisse Eole.
After the development record of 2010, construction was stalled last year. Only two large wind turbines were commissioned. One that dominates Gries lake is the highest in Europe. With a capacity of 2.3 MW, it is located 2,465 meters above sea level. The other major wind turbine inaugurated in 2011, with an output of 0.95 MW, was mounted in November in Rengg bei Entlebuch, adjacent to another facility in operation for six years.
The slowdown in the construction shows that wind power still has to overcome in Switzerland. In addition, favorable sites abound. The new energy policy of the Confederation also assigns an important role in wind energy. Nevertheless, “the procedures are lengthy and projects can still be blocked by cascades of Appeal”.
Suisse Eole therefore requests that the public interest to wind energy is best addressed by policy and is enshrined in legislation.
The relevant committee of the National Council, the CESPE, recently made a step towards more flexibility in site selection because it would allow the installation of wind turbines in the forest under certain conditions and with the consent of the Council of States.
Also, the rules on deforestation should be loosened in favor of renewable energy. In principle, only the sites close to access roads and power lines should be considered. And they would also be subject to the same impact as other projects.