A study gives hope to wind energy

A study in which the Desertification Research Center (CIDE) participates has revealed that, after decades of weakening winds, these have been reinforced on a planetary scale, which has positive consequences for wind energy production.

This study has been published in the latest issue of the journal Nature Climate Change, in which CIDE, a joint center of the Higher Council for Scientific Research (CSIC), the University of Valencia and the Generalitat Valenciana, has participated.

According to the CSIC, the work demonstrates that the decrease observed in wind speed in recent decades, known by the Anglo-Saxon term of “stilling”, has ceased and reinforces the positive consequences in wind energy production, especially in the North Hemisphere.

Fifteen scientists from different international institutions have collaborated in it and it has started from wind series obtained at weather stations around the world since the late 1970s.

César Azorín Molina, a CSIC researcher and one of the authors of the study, explained that “the decrease in wind speed on continental surfaces has been interrupted since 2010, thereafter detecting a strengthening of winds on a planetary scale” .

This wind reinforcement, which has been three times higher than the decrease observed from 1978 to 2010, has had a positive impact on the increase in wind power potential in the United States, Europe and China, among other areas, according to the same sources.

For Zhenzhong Zeng, a researcher at Princeton University (USA) and coordinator of the study, “deepening the causes behind these changes in atmospheric circulation and winds represents a scientific challenge due to their socioeconomic and environmental impacts. “.

“Predicting in advance these climatic cycles of wind strengthening and weakening is key to optimizing wind power production in the future,” Zeng said.