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Economics for Renewable Energy

2011 Assignment Edinburgh based students ONLY

Note: this assignment is for Edinburgh based students ONLY 1. The Scenario A renewable energy developer (Wind Works Ltd) has commissioned your company to undertake a preliminary study which will develop a methodology for the monetary assessment of the environmental costs and benefits associated with a wind energy development. Wind Works would like to develop a wind farm (see project description below) in the Pentland Hills on the edge of Edinburgh. Wind Works is aware that the project will be controversial. In an attempt to support its planning application Wind Works would like to examine the environmental costs and benefits of the development which it can then compare with the conventional economic benefits that the development will bring to the region. You have been asked to develop a strategy for the assessment of the environmental costs of the development. While you have scope to develop this strategy in the way you feel appropriate it is anticipated that a Contingent Valuation (or similar technique) will be a major element of the strategy you proposes. However you are free to suggest any additional work that would help inform your client. The client has only limited understanding of these techniques. This is why your company has been hired to provide advice. You cannot assume that your client has specialist knowledge in the field. 2. The assignment This is a group assignment. Your group will be expected to give a presentation as if you were a team of consultants hired to undertake this study. The exact date is to be confirmed but plan this for week 11 or 12. The main part of the assignment will be the production of a report. The report must be written as if it were going to the client (i.e. a report for Wind Works). The final report should be written up individually. However it is accepted that, having worked together, there may be a high degree of similarity between the reports and you will not be penalised for this. Indeed sharing of information is encouraged. Details of how the report will be submitted will follow. 1) You are to produce a report for Wind Works as a minimum this must include:
i)

ii)

iii) iv)

A brief description of the key impacts of the project explaining where the main environmental costs (and benefits) lie. This is not a full EIA merely an outline description of the impacts that are relevant in the context of this study; A description of your proposed methodology for capturing environmental costs (and benefits). Explain the rationale behind the methodology, how it will be implemented and how the data would be interpreted and used by Windworks in its planning application; A discussion of the limitations, advantages and disadvantages of your approach in the context of this study. Examples of relevant questionnaire(s) to be used in the study.

Economics for Renewable Energy v)

2011 Assignment Edinburgh based students ONLY

A Scope of Work for the firm of opinion pollsters who will be engaged to undertake the actual survey work if the project went ahead

2) You will also be expected to give a short presentation (10-15mins) to Wind Works management to explain your strategy (week 11-12). 3) In addition to the main report you will prepare a separate short individual evaluation of your teams performance. This must include: A log of your meetings. Description of how you worked together and how you arrived at decisions etc A discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of your approach. Description of what you contributed to the process Comments on any changes you would make to the project organisation if you did the work again This task should be completed individually and it is an opportunity to reflect on the process. You can make any necessary assumptions about development layout, timescales etc etc. However, if you wish to clarify any particular details that contact me at s.kerr@hw.ac.uk. The assignment will be marked according to the following scheme: Element Consultants Report 1. Content of main report (explanation of methodology etc) 2. Questionnaire design/content 3. Scope of Work for polsters 4. Presentation and layout of report 5. Team Presentation (week 11or12 to be confirmed) 6. Reflective summary of team performance Total assignment Mark out of 35 20 15 10 10 10 100

IMPORTANT: if talking to local agencies or members of the public ensure that at all times it is made ABSOLUTELY CLEAR THAT THIS PROJECT IS ENTIRELY HYPOTHETICAL. It should also be made clear that any information that you gather is only for the purposes of your assignment and will not be passed on to third parties or otherwise used outside the context of your report. 3. Groups You will work in groups (selected in alphabetical order) It is vitally important that you meet early and then regularly thereafter. Group work can be slow and there is a great deal to discuss in this project. You will need to meet on a number of occasions, allocate tasks, and report back to the group. You will find yourselves dealing with unfamiliar concepts and ideas and conflicting ideas about the best approach, consequently the project cannot be left till the end of term. Failure to organise as a group or participate is always obvious in the final report and consequently it is reflected in the marks awarded.

Economics for Renewable Energy

2011 Assignment Edinburgh based students ONLY

4. Project Description The outline development proposal is for 60 x 2.5 megawatt wind turbines. The new machines would have a 80m tower height and a 45m diameter rotor. The farm will be situated at the eastern end of the Pentland Hills along the ridge line and down the northerly facing slope. The exact layout has not yet been determined but the centre of the wind farm will be approximately at NT 218 661 GB Grid. Make any reasonable assumptions you have to about the layout of the site.