The cost of the wind turbine project depends on the number of wind turbines and their size. For simplicity the table below shows the typical costs for a single 1 MW wind turbine, then multiplication factors that can be applied for larger 2.5 MW and 3.5 MW wind turbines, then a percentage to increase that by for multiple-turbine projects.
|Project Stage||1 x 1MW||Factor for
|Development – feasibility||£4k||x 1||x 1||x 25%|
|Development – planning consent||£45k||x 1.5||x 2||x 50%|
|Installation||£1,400k||x 1.65||x 2.25||x 95%|
For example, if you are considering three 3.5 MW wind turbines and would like to know roughly what the planning consent process would cost, multiply the ‘1 x 1 MW’ planning consent cost of £45k by 2 to give the budget price for a single 2.5 MW wind turbine, then increase this by 100% (2 x 50%) to give the budget estimate for three 2.5 MW wind turbines, so £45k x 2 x 100% = £180k.
Obviously these are budget costs but would be typical for a normal site and assume using good quality wind turbines (which we’d always recommend).
The income you would receive for the energy generated by a wind turbine is discussed in more detail on the Sources of income for wind turbines page.
The actual income from a wind turbine varies significantly depending on the average wind speed at the site (see the How much wind energy could I generate from a wind turbine? page), so the revenue shown in the table on the How much wind energy income would a wind turbine provide? page comprises the net income after maintenance costs, business rates and land rental (latter assumed at 8% of gross income) have been deducted. The exact project revenues for your project would be worked out during the feasibility process.
Payback periods/Internal Rate of Return (IRRs)
Based on the project costs and incomes outlined above for single-turbine projects, the simple payback periods and IRRs shown on the What would the return on investment be from a wind turbine? page would be achieved for the different annual average wind speeds shown. It is too complicated to work the equivalent out for multiple-turbine projects, but this should still give you a good idea of the economic viability of a community wind project.
Want to install a wind turbine?
If you are in the UK then take our Wind Site Self-Assessment - The first step to provide information we need to complete a Windpower Feasibility Study. It takes about 20 minutes to work through the basic checks, including:
- Estimating wind speed
- Checking proximity of nearby properties
- Checking site access and approach roads
- Investigating connection with the grid