Switzerland – 2010 a record year for wind power (42 MW)

Switzerland now boasts a modest 28 wind turbines, covering the electricity needs of some 21,000 households. Western Switzerland scores particularly high with Suisse-Eole, which says cantons in that area have done a good job at factoring wind energy into their development plans.

Both Neuchâtel and Vaud estimate wind energy could account for up to a quarter of their energy needs. But before that happens they’ll face stiff opposition from the Swiss foundation for landscape protection. That group says wind turbines make noise which bothers people.

They want the minimum legal distance from houses to be increased from the current 300 meters to one kilometer minimum. France and Germany set their limits at 1.5 kilometers.