The largest wind power plant in Antarctica, able to provide electricity to 500 homes, was inaugurated today in the frozen continent thanks to a joint United States and New Zealand.
Its three huge wind turbines will supply 11 percent of the energy demand of all scientific research projects of both countries in the Ross Sea coast, said diplomatic sources in New Zealand.
The wind energy plant will significantly reduce the emission of gaseous pollutants and, by not using fossil fuel, there will be less risk of potential spills that damage the environment.
The wind energy project has cost eleven million dollars and was opened this morning but the turbines are fully operational for a month.
Chaired the event New Zealand Foreign Minister, Murray McCully, who said that initiatives like this are necessary to protect "one of the most untouched ecosystems but also more fragile the planet."
The wind power plant has a capacity of 1 megawatt, can cut the use of 460 thousand liters of diesel fuel and emit 370 thousand tons less carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, according to the New Zealand company Meridian Energy, which has installed wind turbines.
Since the work began in November 2008, the intense cold and winds forced the workers to use water to freeze the concrete foundation of each mill, which can withstand winds up to 200 kilometers per hour.
The world’s southernmost wind farm it is located on Crater Hill, Ross Island, Antarctica. The construction and development of this wind farm will be unique and challenging.