The regional government of Andalusia has put the brakes on projects in Tarifa pending a commission decision determining the geographical areas for future wind development. The commission follows the regional government's pronouncement against the suitability of Tarifa's protected areas for wind power. Environmental sensitivity has been accentuated in the area by 1998's huge toxic industrial spill, threatening the Doñana National Park, Europe's largest bird reserve. The existence of the reserve is a main reason for limiting wind development. Thus, even though Tarifa is the country's wind surfing capital and swept by some of Europe's strongest winds, the regional government has slapped a 400 MW limit on all new development. The area is riddled with old 100 kW and 300 kW turbines, which neither look nor perform as well as today's technology-though a new 1.65 MW unit in the area (story above) has received a very positive reaction locally as far as visual impact is concerned.
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Senior Renewable Energy Analyst (WindGEMINI Product Lead) DNV GL Bristol (City Centre), City of Bristol