General information

1. Project Background

Vindkraft has through its own and also available historical data determined that the average wind speeds for the selected areas are above 7.5 m/s. The sites are also deemed to be excellent locations for the construction activities. Electrical interconnection to the national power grids can also be achieved through low cost connections. Vindkraft has together with ABB Group (Sweden) developed a “standard” 9 MW transformer station to connect to the existing 35 kV network. For the Kalanchak and Armyansk sites a high voltage interconnection is developed in cooperation with ABB Group and Ukrainian specialists.

The Project is being developed to meet the stringent requirements of EU, EBRD and IFC in terms of environmental impact and public consultations.

This International EIA is conducted according to Ukrainian and EU requirements to ensure proper protection of the environment and minimize impact on the environment. With participation of leading national universities and foreign scientists fundamental archaeological, ornithological and geological studies were successfully completed.

1.1. Project Team

Vindkraft presently has 31 employees that are exclusively active in the development activities for the Project. In addition, Vindkraft employs a number of international and domestic consultants such as WKA (construction management), EMD (wind analysis), Insitu (wind measurement management), Froehling (foundation design), WBR (environmental advice) and Celynx Energy Solutions GmbH (development advice including tender management) for the purpose of developing the projects. Vindkraft uses the internationally experienced suppliers Vestas and ABB Groups for the main supply of equipment and services during the construction phases. The same companies are involved in the operation of the wind power plants (“WPPs”).

2. Project Sites

Ukraine has considerable areas which are suitable for wind power plants. Taking into consideration the shallow coastal zones and internal water areas with depth up to 20 meters, Ukraine has approximately 7 thousand square kilometers of areas, which are suitable for construction of wind power plants – these are Southern and Eastern regions of Ukraine (Odessa, Kirovograd, Poltava, Kharkov, Nikolaev, Dnepropetrovsk, Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporozhye and Kherson regions), Crimea, the Transcarpathian and Ivano-Frankovsk regions.

The proposed project will be situated in the Kherson and northern Crimea regions which have a great wind potential.

Figure 1 : Kherson region

K122herson region is located in the south of Ukraine in Prichernomorskaja lowland, in a steppe zone, on the bottom current of Dnipro river. It is bordered by the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov, and also by Sivash Lake (the Rotten sea) and Kakhovsky water basin. In the area there are 19 rivers. The largest rivers are: Dnipro which is 178 km long and Inhulets which is 180 km long.

Considerations of the WPP equipment, construction and location of the sites was contemplated on the basis of:

  1. Available territory.
  2. Engineering-geological conditions.
  3. The possibility of maximum wind power use.
  4. The prospect of territory enlargement.
  5. Potential capacity distribution.
  6. Maintenance of sanitary and conservation zones for objects on or within the suggested area.
  7. Provisions for transport communications.
  8. Agreement to the WPP construction within sight of land tenants, farmers and other stakeholders.

3. Environmental Impact Assessment for the Project

Environmental Impact Assessment (“EIA”) report is to serve as a main input for environmental appraisal of the project by the international financing organizations for funding decision. Furthermore, the study shall form the basis for specifying the environmental provisions for engineering, procurement and construction, and operation and maintenance documents to be elaborated in the subsequent project planning steps, to ensure that the design, construction and operation of the Project will be in an environmentally acceptable manner.        

Public consultations for local population and non-government ecological and public organizations were conducted according to EU standards to ensure proper information to the public.

In discussions with EBRD the Novorossisk Project deemed to be a category “B” project. Hence, taking into consideration the similarities in the setup, the Beregovaya and Stavki Projects would also be included in this category. Mega 100 and Mega 200 Projects at the Armyansk and Kalanchak Sites are believed to be category “A” projects.

4. Planning Process   

Project concept development was conducted in a few stages:

  • Wind Studies
  • Scoping Meetings
  • Site Selection
  • Permitting and technical documentation
  • Geotechnical Studies
  • Ornithological Studies
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Public Consultation
  • Feasibility Study

5. Public Consultation

The public consultation (“PC”) seeks to define a technically and culturally appropriate approach to consultation and disclosure. Public Consultation and Disclosure Program (“PCDP”) is a tool of communication with the stakeholder groups - all individuals and organizations affected by the proposed project (governmental and non-governmental organization, local communities, associations, experts, institutions etc.).

The goals are to ensure that adequate and timely information is provided to project-affected people and other stakeholders, that these groups are given sufficient opportunity to voice their opinions and concerns, and that these concerns influence project decisions.

5.1. National Requirements

National Requirements for public participation in EIA (OVOS according to the Ukrainian legislation and part of the feasibility study to be filled for the permit application by Vindkraft) are outlined in the State Building Code of Ukraine “Structure and contents of environmental impact assessment (EIA) materials for designing of buildings and constructions A.2.2.1-2003” – paragraphs 1.9.-1.11.

Annex F [note: the Annex letter: in Cyrillic alphabet it is Annex "E"] of this standard contains a list of "types of projects or activities which constitute higher environmental risk" for which full EIA is mandatory, and the Ministry of Environment being the competent authority. Wind Power Plant (WPP) with internal cable connection and external overhead power transmission lines is not included in this list. However, DBN A.2.2-1-2003 prescribes that an EIA with a narrower scope (to be determined case by case) shall be undertaken for projects not contained in the Annex F list, and the local authorities of the Ministry of Environment Protection and local State Sanitary and Epidemiology Service (Ministry of Public Health) being the relevant authorities for the project permitting.

The Ukrainian EIA implementation regulations contained in the Standard DBN A.2.2.-1-2003 also include provisions for public consultation and information disclosure as part of the implementation of the Aarhus Convention to which Ukraine is signatory. According to the Standard, for Annex F projects (i.e. with significant environmental relevance), public hearings are mandatory, while for non-Annex F Projects only the decision on the result of the Environmental Assessment needs to be made public by the regulating authority.

5.2. International Standards

The EBRD standards require that projects are held to the more stringent of national standards and European Union standards. For those areas where there are no European Union standards, the EBRD relies on the more stringent of national and World Bank Group standards. In the area of public consultation, the European Union requirements in the EIA Directive, as amended, and the international conventions ratified, such as the Espoo Convention, are required. EBRD concurs with the principles of the Aarhus Convention, which is specifically mentioned in the EBRD Public Information Policy.

The EBRD fosters the principles of public consultation within its region of operations, and continues to be guided by the underlying presumption that, whenever possible, information concerning the Bank's operational activities will be made available to the public in the absence of a compelling reason for confidentiality.

5.3. Scoping

Both the EBRD Environmental Procedures and the Public Information Policy require a thorough scoping procedure for all "A" level operations, which will involve the Project Sponsor consulting with representatives of the locally affected public and with government agencies, as well as with other organizations. By means of a thorough appraisal, the sponsor must ensure identification of all key issues, in particular by consulting the public on the project. The term 'consulting' is significant, as it means 'affording the public the opportunity to influence operation design, including location, technological choice and timing,' and goes far beyond the provision of information. For operations involving trans-boundary impacts the requirements outlined in the Espoo Convention must be followed.

Vindkraft recognizes the need to be transparent and take decisions on the project based on feedback from stakeholders in order to improve the project, lessen impacts and maximize benefits for all stakeholders.

 

The Project will consist of:

  1. Construction of the Wind Power Plants (“WPP”).
  2. Construction of the electrical interconnections.
  3. Construction and/or modernization of Electricity Substation.
  4. Construction of the access roads.

6. Wind Turbine  

A wind turbine has three main components and several ancillaries. The wind turbines that are anticipated to be used is a Vestas V112 - 3.0 MW and/or Vestas V112/V126 - 3.3 MW units.

Rotor

The rotor converts the wind power to low-speed, rotational mechanical power. Vestas blades are made of carbon and fiberglass.

Gearbox

The low-speed mechanical power is converted into high rotational speed, low torque mechanical power by a gearbox. Vestas gearbox is a four-stage differential gearbox with three planetary stages and one helical stage.

Generator

The high-speed mechanical power is converted into low-voltage, high current electrical power by an electrical generator. Most machines use induction generators – sometimes more than one per turbine. These generate electricity at a relatively low voltage. Although the cost of high-voltage generators is excessive, a few turbine models use variable-speed generators and require power converters to synchronize with the grid.

It is going to be used a Vestas three phase synchronous generator with a permanent magnet rotor that is connected to the grid through a full scale converter.

Ancillaries

  • Brakes - There are two broad classes of brake. Aerodynamic brakes operate by pitching either the whole blade or the end section (tip brake) out of the wind. Mechanical brakes act more like vehicle brakes, absorbing energy either from the low-speed shaft or, more commonly, from the high-speed shaft.
  • Pitch mechanism - Pitch-regulated machines continuously change the angle of the rotor blades to optimize energy capture and to limit the loads on the machine. Some of the larger stall-regulated machines also incorporate a slow-rate pitching capability to optimize stall characteristics (this facility is known as active stall or combi-stall).
  • Yaw mechanism - The yaw mechanism is the device that keeps the turbine facing into the wind and therefore capturing the maximum possible energy.
  • Control and safety systems - The control system monitors wind, network and turbine conditions and ensures that all the systems are working together to capture the maximum amount of energy.
  • Power factor correction - Wind turbines that use induction generators generally employ some form of power factor correction. This is usually achieved using a bank of capacitors installed in the wind turbine controller cabinet within the tower.

7. Construction

As regards the Novorossisk project state-of the-art technology and processes were implemented. Vindkraft in cooperation with Vestas’ subcontractor has carried out the construction works.

Figure 2 : Construction at Novorossiyske

Vestas V112 wind turbine in NovorossiyskeProject construction can be divided into three phases: civil infrastructure, electrical infrastructure and turbine installation. The installation of civil infrastructure involves the construction of access roads, crane pads, laydown areas, foundations and in some cases a service building.

The envisaged sequence of events would be:

  • Construct road improvements to the site entrance as required
  • Construct site entrance and temporary construction compound
  • Construct the site access roads with field gates and temporary fencing (if required)
  • Excavate and construct the turbine foundations.
  • Construct/Upgrade the substation and install the grid connection
  • Excavate the trenches and lay the power and instrumentation cables
  • Erect the turbines
  • Commission the turbines
  • Carry out land reinstatement and habitat enhancement.

Vindkraft mainly employs local construction companies and most of the workers come from the Kherson region. International supervisors will live in the nearby villages.

Best construction, health-and-safety and environmental practices will be followed at all times.

7.1. On-Site Access Roads

Access roads will be constructed to enable the delivery of equipment and turbines during the construction phase and to enable service vehicles to access turbine sites during plant operation.

Access roads will be designed to run along existing farm roads where possible in order to minimize environmental disturbance and land usage. Where new roads are required, they will be placed with consideration to prevailing ecological features wherever possible and to minimize disruption.

The following activities are involved in the construction of access roads:

  • Roads will be cleared by a qualified operator.
  • Land will be grubbed and cleared by a qualified civil contractor using an excavator, a bulldozer and bull rake.
  • Up to 0.4 m of top soil/overburden will be removed from the road surface and re-vegetated afterwards.
  • The roads will be covered with composite materials to ensure that the road has sufficient load bearing capacity for the transportation of turbines, cranes and other heavy equipment.
  • In some cases roads are only constructed for temporary use by laying concrete plates which later are removed to be reused elsewhere.

7.2. Crane Pads

An area adjacent to the wind turbine will be prepared to support the heavy lift crane. This crane pad, which will have similar construction requirements as the access roads, may be removed once the turbine is installed, in order to return the land to its original use. The crane pad has approximate dimensions of 35m x 35m.

7.3. Laydown Areas

There will be an area immediately adjacent to the foundation, which may be cleared to enable the turbine components to be unloaded and stored prior to installation. These laydown areas will be approximately 90m x 90m and must have specified capacity and grade to allow the components to be unloaded and stored.

Figure 3 : Novorossisk foundation after backfilling and landscaping

20111027-Novorossike-WPP-Construction-015

7.4. Foundations

A pilled foundation for the planed wind power plant type is necessary according to the encountered subsoil circumstances. The piles are of the type “finished driven piles” with a square diameter of 0.35 m. These piles are connected with the foundation.

All rock and most soil that is excavated would be put back on top of the foundations and graded. Any excess soil would either be disposed at the landfill site adjacent to the wind farm site, or spread in areas that are not environmentally sensitive on site with the agreement of the landowners and local authority. Within these on-site areas, soil would be graded, contoured and re-seeded as required.

The following steps are involved in the construction of turbine foundations:

  • Excavation of area for the proprietary tower foundation will be completed using a specialized excavator.
  • A portion of the excavated material will be returned to the foundation as backfill material if the soil is of acceptable quality. Surplus material will be removed and placed in an approved pit.
  • Compacting perimeter of the hole using a compactor and/or excavator.
  • Installing form work, rebar and pouring concrete for the tower base.  
  • Disposal of excavated material and other waste.

7.5. Transportation

It is anticipated that turbines will be transported by special delivery ships from the manufacturing facility to the nearby ports. The wind turbine elements are typically transported in a ready form directly from the supplier’s factory. This includes the parts of the tower and rotor blades. The dimensions of the elements usually exceed standard loads. Therefore a lot of special arrangements need to be done concerning the organization of the transportation (routes, time, information etc.).

The process is very complex and needs to be agreed with all involved parties such as roads managers, police, local communities etc.

All components will be delivered to the construction site on specially equipped trailers, as required for the construction sequence. Transportation of the wind turbine elements to the construction site may be difficult mainly because of limited space and therefore proper planning and preparation of access roads are crucial for the success of this phase.

Several route opportunities were identified as part of the transportation assessment.

7.6. Turbine Installation

Figure 4 : Special truck carrying a section of the wind turbine tower at Novorossisk

100The major construction tasks will include:

  • Transportation of turbine to site using a series of flatbed trailers and truck. Site offloading will be carried out by two cranes.
  • Assembling of the nacelle and blades in an area of approximately 90m x 90m.
  • Erecting the turbine tower using a large crane.
  • Installation of the tower, nacelle, hub and blades using a heavy lift crane and a smaller ‘tailing’ crane to stabilize the loads during erection.

 

Figure 5 : Tower Installation WTG 1 Novorossisk

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Once the turbine components are assembled, work will continue over a period of 5-7 days to complete the necessary mechanical and electrical connections.

Following the mechanical completion, the turbines will be commissioned individually and placed into service.

 

7.7. Site Restoration

This activity includes:

  • Backfilling and compacting excavated soil using an excavator and compactor.
  • Final grading to recontour the site surface using a bulldozer and/or grader.
  • Removal of site grubbing and other debris.
  • Replacement of topsoil and re-vegetation of site by natural re-growth in forest and hay in cropland.

8. Maintenance

Each turbine would have its own internal control system interfaced to a central control system located in the WPP substation. The turbines would be automatic in their everyday operation. Where a fault to develop which required an operator to intervene then the supervisory control system would make contact with on-duty stuff about needed intervention. The operators would be able to shut down one or all of the wind turbines remotely.

 

Malfunctions and Accidents

It is important to consider any potential malfunctions and accidents that could occur during each of the project phases. The following events may result in unexpected negative impacts to the environment:

  • During construction and decommissioning phases there is the potential for equipment upset and oil spills.
  • Maintenance activities may involve the use of petroleum products such as lubricants and there is the potential for the accidental release of these and other hazardous substances into the environment.
  • Adverse weather conditions may cause operational problems. Precipitation in freezing conditions can lead to ice build-up on turbine blades, possibly resulting in ice shedding and ice throw. These conditions may create a risk to human health or lead to damage of surrounding infrastructure.
  • During connection to the grid, power disruptions may occur. This may not be necessary, depending on exact connection locations. If power outages are required, they will be short-term and are not expected to impact a large number of users.

9. Decommissioning

The design lifespan of the wind plant is 20 years, thus, decommissioning is not expected until 2035.

If it is economically viable, the turbines may be upgraded to continue operation or be replaced with newer technology to allow the continued operation of the wind plant. If the proponent chooses to decommission the site, the following activities would be involved:

  • Disconnection of wind turbines from grid.
  • Disassembly and transportation of wind turbines using cranes and trucks.
  • Possible excavation and removal of concrete pads using an excavator and trucks.
  • Final grading to re-contour the site surface.
  • Re-vegetation of site by natural re-growth or seeding.
  • Disposal, re-use or recycling of any associated waste material.

Rationale for the Project and Alternative Sites

In response to growing concerns regarding climate change and increasing atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) there has been a burgeoning interest in renewable sources of energy. The combustion of fossil fuels (hard coal, lignite, oil and gas) for conventional power generation is a major contributor to the man-made greenhouse gas emissions. Reducing the reliance on fossil fuels and increasing power produced from the renewable energy sector has been identified as a substantial factor in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Wind energy is one of the most promising renewable energy sources, and as a consequence ambitious targets are defined for it at European level.

The market demand for “renewable energy sources” and existing gap on Ukrainian market in this field were main rationale for the Project development. The Project will provide certified “green energy” from renewable resources allowing for potential limitation of significant emission to the environment from conventional energy sources and potential decreasing consumption of natural resources.

Ukraine should develop alternative energy production which also will help to meet European standards with regard to the policy of sustainable development.

9.1. Green Tariff

On 25 September 2008, the Law “On Amendments to the Laws of Ukraine “On Electricity” and ”On Alternative Sources of Energy” was approved by Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. According to the law “Green” tariff is “a special tariff for electricity generated at the power plants with use of alternative energy sources (except blast-furnace and coking gases; concerning hydro energy plants - at the SHPP with capacity less 10 MW)”.

The Law obliges the wholesale electricity market of Ukraine to purchase electricity generated at the power plants with use of alternative sources of energy through special “green” tariffs which are to be adopted by the National Electricity Regulatory Commission of Ukraine. The Green Tariff is set by the National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC). It covers alternative energy production facilities such as wind power plants, hydropower, biomass, biogas, and other methane utilization projects (except blast-furnace and coking gases). There is no present capacity cap on Ukraine's Green Tariff except for hydropower plants, where an eligible facility cannot exceed 10 MW in capacity.

9.2. Need for the Project

Ukraine entirely satisfies its electricity needs due to its own production. A small surplus of the produced electricity is exported. For future development of green and inexhaustible energy sources Ukraine should develop alternative energy production which also will help to meet European standards with regard to the policy of sustainable development.

Table 1 : Energy distribution in Ukraine 2012

 energy by types 2012

As it is shown in table above, in 2012 the wind energy sector represented only 0.02% of the total sold electricity on the market, and only 0.16% of the total installed capacity.

9.3. Pollution Savings

The carbon emissions factor for the Ukrainian Power Grid (Standardized emission factors for the Ukrainian electricity grid) for the electricity delivered to the grid is 0.807 tCO2/MWh. Hence, by displacing fossil-fuel based power generation over 896,064 tons of CO2-equivalents would be prevented from entering the atmosphere on a yearly basis over the lifetime of the Project.

 

10. Anticipated Environmental Impacts

10.1. Potential Environmental Relevance of the Project Type

In the Ukrainian EIA Standard, WPP with internal electricity transmission cables are not included in the list of types of activities or facilities which present an increased environmental hazard. As a general practice, the operation of WPP with internal electricity transmission lines does not produce big amounts of waste and does not cause particulate or liquid emissions to the environment, and does not result in non-reversible or critical changes in the atmo-, hydro-, or lithospheres.

In the followings the anticipated main environmental effects of the Project are described. The evaluation of the environmental impacts will consider the impact of the project structures as well as the impacts during construction and operation of the WPP.

10.2. Wind Power Plant

  • Visual impact Previously uninterrupted landscapes will include rows of turbines which are visible for a substantial distance, considering the approximate height of the turbine with the blade in its highest position – about 145 meters.
  • Shadow Flicker A wind turbine's moving blades can cast a moving shadow on a nearby residence, depending on the time of the year (which determines the position of the sun above the horizon) and time of day. It is possible to calculate very precisely whether a flickering shadow will in fact fall on a given location near a wind farm, and how many hours in a year it will do so.
  • Acoustic impact During operation, the wind turbines will generate some noise. This will be experienced by the inhabitants of local settlements but all the requirements on location, necessary sanitary zone and turbine equipment will be met and the noise will be kept below the legally permitted limits.
  • Electromagnetic Interference WTs or generation equipment can interfere with communication systems that use electromagnetic. This is caused mainly by the turbine blades, which sometimes scatter the signals as they rotate. The tower may also reflect signals, so interfering with the original signal arriving at the receiver.
  • Land use impact Project will be located on the sites described in the previous chapter, though land occupation within the sanitary zone does not limit domestic use, but require precautions in accordance with the possible physical impacts in process of WPP operation within the sanitary zone. Also land use impact during construction and assembly works should be considered.
  • Ecological impact Most concern regarding the ecological effects of wind farms relates to the risk of bird and bat collisions, while vibration and habitat intrusion is considered a minor threat to fauna and flora of the regions. Teams of scientists work with ornithological, theriological (mammals) and botanical investigations, to assess the ecological impacts and the results of their efforts will be made public and reviewed carefully to avoid or to compensate any adverse impacts.
  • Cultural Heritage No archeological findings were situated in the place of the project area. There are no archeologically valuable places in the range of potential impact of construction works for wind farms as well as roads and cables constructed for wind farm purposes.
  • Icing – Ice Thought Ice pieces appear on blades during the cold period of the year as a result of freezing blade motion. To prevent occurrence of this effect Vindkraft will adapt one of modern technologies during the choice of turbines supplier.
  • Public Health Visual impact, shadow flicker, acoustical impact and ice thought are the parts of possible impact on Public Health.
  • Impact resulting from construction and assembly works During the construction and installation of turbines, substations and the implementation of the interconnection scheme certain inconveniences may be experienced, such as noise, traffic congestions and dust. Construction, transportation and installation work will be conducted in such a manner that the least possible impact will be experienced by the population.

10.3. Substations

Potential environmental disturbances are generated at the installations of new equipment, and in case of non-regular operation, accidents and natural hazards.

Waste management will be organized according to “best practice” guidance.

 

11. Environmental Impacts and Mitigation Measures

11.1. Impact on Geology and Geomorphology  

Any type of construction or industrial activity has the potential to impact soil, sand and gravel resources, and other sources of rock. These impacts can occur within the specific area of construction as a result of excavation, grading, and so forth, or regionally as a result of extraction and the use of building materials. In addition, construction activities can impact or be impacted by local seismic and geologic hazard conditions.

For the Project, it is not planned to open pits or quarries in the immediate vicinity of the sites, all materials for the construction will be transported from other locations. No major obstacles on the environment and population have been identified.

Impacts from Construction and corresponding Mitigation Measures

WPP

During the construction of the wind power plants, certain impacts on the geology and geomorphology of the areas may be registered. They might vary as to significance.

In order to transport the components of the WTs and the cranes and the concrete needed for the foundations, the roads are very important. Therefore one of the most important impacts is the road construction, while we are talking about limestone as geologic structure for the sites. In order to mitigate this impact, the WPP owner will try to take maximum use of the existing roads. As the vehicles needed for transport are, usually, very heavy, the roads will be properly dimensioned and constructed. If needed, the new roads will be built in such a manner so that the geology and geomorphology of the sites will suffer minimum damages. New access roads should be located to follow natural contours of the topography and minimize side hill cuts.

Another possible impact is produced by the excavations necessary to build the WTs foundations. An important volume of soil will be excavated. Part of it (the most fertile) will be combined with fertile soil and used to cover the WTs foundations. The other part will be used for the rehabilitation of the sites from where the material used for building the foundations is extracted or for the rehabilitation of other damaged sites in the area (the principle of avoiding transformation of an environmental protection action into a polluting action is to be considered, therefore, transporting soil over long distances might produce even more pollution than depositing it close to the extraction site). The excavation will be made taking into consideration the directions of the WTG manufacturer and the local underground conditions so that the safety of the WT will be assured while minimizing the impact on the environment.

 

Electricity Substation

The impact of building the substations on the geology and geomorphology is related also on the excavations and road constructions. The same mitigation measures as above will be used.

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance and corresponding Mitigation Measures

There may be an impact on the geological structures produced by the vibrations generated through the operation of the WTs.

The mitigation measures can be taken only by the WTs manufacturer in the sense of reducing the vibrations of the equipment and by the constructor in the sense of using vibration absorbers while installing the WTs.

11.2. Impacts on Soils and Subsurface

Impacts from Construction and corresponding Mitigation Measures

WPP (and cables)

Collection grid will be carried out by cable lines, i.e. these cables will be laid at the depth of 1 meter. The primary soils structure will not be damaged, since soils depth delimitation is larger. In any case, the upper layer of soil will be taken off with the purpose of further restoration and in order to re-cultivate vegetation.

Electricity Substation

The substations foundation depth is insignificant; if soils depth delimitation is more the primary structure of soils will not be damaged.

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance

No impacts on the soil are expected during operation and maintenance of the new facilities.

11.3. Impacts on Water  

Both surface water and groundwater resources are highly valued commodities in the Project area. Activities that use water resources or have the potential to impact the quality of water resources will be reviewed within the context of local and regional water concerns.

A number of construction activities will use water. Because the construction phase will last more than 1 year, large amounts of water would be needed. The water may be trucked in from off site or obtained from local groundwater wells or surface water bodies near the facility. Activities related to use of water resources would include:

  • Water used for dust control during the construction of access roads, clearing of vegetation, grading, and road traffic;
  • Water used for making concrete used in the foundations of wind towers, substations, central control buildings, and various personnel support facilities;
  • Water used by the construction crew.

11.4. Groundwater  

Impacts from Construction and corresponding Mitigation Measures

During the construction activities an important amount of water is needed.

Groundwater quality and availability vary widely across the Project area. The availability of groundwater resources to support site construction activities would be assessed, along with other characteristics such as groundwater quality, depth to groundwater, and local groundwater uses. The best construction techniques will be used so that the regulation regarding groundwater would be respected.

Storm water control systems and any other activity that alters the ground surface could affect groundwater infiltration as well as the response time of a nearby surface water body.

WPP

The only possible impact of the WPPs on the groundwater is in case of an accident when the oil contained in the gearbox flows to the ground. Because of the geologic structure and the high permeability of the layers, the ground water may be polluted. Although such accidents are extremely rare, the constructor of the WPP will take into consideration this possibility the oil would be temporarily stored in the channel allowing the intervention teams to collect it before it pollutes the ground water.

Electricity Substation

Pollution with different substances contained in the electrical transformers (cooling oil) and in the switches (oil, if any) is to be considered as a potential impact on the groundwater. Anyway, the type of equipment mentioned before owns, usually, collecting channels.

The mitigation measures are those used in the international environment for this kind of buildings/equipment.

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance and corresponding Mitigation Measures

WPP

The only possible impact of the WPPs on the groundwater is in case of an accident when the oil contained in the gearbox flows to the ground. Because of the geologic structure and the high permeability of the layers, the underground water may be polluted. Also such accidents are extremely rare, the constructor of the WPP will take into consideration this possibility.

Electricity Substation

Pollution with different substances contained in the electrical transformers and in the switchgears is to be considered as a potential impact on the groundwater. Anyway, the type of equipment mentioned before, usually has collecting channels.

The mitigation measures are those used in the international environment for this kind of buildings/equipment: construction of the collecting channels.

11.5. Surface water

Impacts from Construction and corresponding Mitigation Measures

The Construction activities are not expected to have adverse impacts on the water bodies.

The routing of the line observes the necessary distances to surface waters.

Adoption of good construction practices and site management to avoid impacting surface water such as sitting of water bodies from erosion run-off.

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance

No impacts on water bodies are expected from operation and maintenance.

12. Impacts on Air and Climate  

Impacts from Construction and corresponding Mitigation Measures

During construction short term and localized air impact might occur from dust from the working areas. Experience shows that these effects are in the range of less than 2% of the emissions avoided if fossil fuels are substituted. What is more, they decline as the share of clean renewable energy in the system increases.

Good construction practices will be adopted in order to avoid dust emission during construction phase.

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance and corresponding Mitigation Measures

Turbine work depends on the wind flow occurrence, the turbine rotor comes in motion at a wind speed higher than 3 m/s. The physical structure of the turbine does not influence air masses at all in calm weather because of the obvious reason, i.e. non-circulation of these masses.

Operated wind turbine changes force and direction of air stream, but there is no evidence of a considerable character of those changes.

The substation facilities are mainly ventilated by the emergency ventilation, which is intended to remove excessive heat from the environmentally safe technological equipment (panels with meters and microprocessor devices or boxes with air-tight vacuum switches).

13. Impacts on Flora, Fauna and Habitats

Impacts from Construction and corresponding Mitigation Measures

In the process of construction considerable areas will be withdrawn for erection facilities for temporal usage (cranes, auxiliary equipment), turbine sites parts etc. These areas will be temporally covered by concrete or asphalt-macadam surfacing.

Collection grid will be carried out by cable lines, i.e. these cables will be laid at the depth of 1 meter. The primary soils structure will not be damaged, since soil depth is larger. In any case, the upper layer of soil will be taken off with the purpose of later restoration and in order to reestablish vegetation.

Some birds species, related to the group at risk of WPP influence are nesting on the ground. Therefore, there is a risk of disturbance that will cause these birds to abandon the nests.

A monitoring plan will be developed in order to directly estimate the impacts of the wind farms on birds and bats. At the moment Vindkraft is establishing a monitoring team.

The monitoring team will consist of biologists who will assess the impact of the WPP operation. The monitoring team will observe the birds, as well as will identify and collect bird and bat carcasses for at least two years after the WPP will be put into operation.

14. Impacts on Land Use 

The land needed for wind farm development is relatively small. The wind turbines have to be spaced apart, in order not to interfere aerodynamically with one another (array losses). Also present design of WT is considering internal transformers in order to decrease land use.

Lands will be occupied by the Project in two stages.

  • Design and exploration works, envisaged by the project to specify turbine location, interconnection networks and substation.
  • Construction and assembly works, anticipated involving additional transportation and assembly facilities that might occupy additional territories.

 

Impacts from Construction and corresponding Mitigation Measures

A considerable amount of land will be occupied in the process of building permanent and temporal objects. The permanent objects include turbines, auxiliary erection sites for a small crane, transmission line towers, access roads, WPP substations and interconnection substation. The usages of this land for farming (ranching) during the period of building will be limited. Nevertheless, this will not be reflected on the inhabitants of surrounding villages, whilst these sites are only partially used as pastures due to their barrenness.

To minimize Land Use impact WT are designed to include transformers inside of it, also cable connection will be used to collect electricity within the wind field in order to avoid too many overhead transmission lines installations.

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance

The acres will be withdrawn for turbines erection, auxiliary erection sites for a small crane, transmission line towers, drive ways, WPP substations and interconnection substation for the permanent use.

15. Property issues, Impact on Income

Construction and operation of the proposed wind farm would have a positive effect on the local economy, in terms of local employment during the construction phase, and also in the longer term from landowner rentals, local services, and employment of maintenance staff.

The wind farm becomes a positive feature of the area, attracting interest from locals and visitors alike and to investigate what community and wider initiatives could be introduced to provide tangible benefits to the local community throughout the wind farm’s life. We can assume that touristic potential of the project area will be positively affected by project implementation.

It should also be noted, that the development of this project may result in the development of associated activities, such as operation and maintenance activities (gardening, cleaning, surveillance, telecommunications, etc.) and specialized external consulting.

Due to the fact that the settlements of rural type are situated at least 600 m away from the Project area, no displacement and relocation problems incur.

Compensation for land needed for construction

For the time needed for construction of the Project, the land for construction will be provided to Vindkraft under a short-term (only for the construction time) lease contract.

The Project will give raise to special Ukrainian compensation procedures. In line with the new construction law introduced in 2011, Vindkraft will pay a fee to local authorities for the purpose of local infrastructure development.

Compensation for land needed for Project structure and for land reclaimed during operation and maintenance

The acquisition of land plots by Vindkraft will be undertaken in accordance with the following regulatory framework:

  • Land Code of Ukraine (1 January 2002)
  • Law of Ukraine "On Land Assessment (Valuation)"
  • Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine of 17.11.1997 No.1279 "On Size of and Procedure for Calculation of Agricultural and Forestry Losses Subject to Compensation" and the Appendix thereof.
  • Constitution of Ukraine, Articles 13,14, 41
  • Law of Ukraine of 21.05.1997 No.280/97-BP "On Local Self-government in Ukraine"
  • "Regulation on the State Committee of Land Resources of Ukraine", approved by Presidential Decree of 14.08.2000 No. 970/2000
  • Law of Ukraine of 06.10.1998 No. 161-XIV "On Land Lease"
  • "Procedure for Calculation and Compensation of Losses to Land Owners and Land Users" approved by Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine of 19.04.1993 No.284

Vindkraft has studied the international practice of the implementation of such projects and will use the relevant appeals experience in the course of implementation of this project.           

16. Impacts on Visual Amenity and Scenery  

Visual impact has a direct effect on amenity, defined as resources available for people’s convenience, enjoyment and comfort, in this case the features of the landscape.

A landscape is perceived in many different ways since aesthetic values such as beauty and diversity are subjective, while its value will also be influenced by use (e.g. national park, wildlife habitat, agricultural land).

Impacts from Construction of the WPP, electrical substations and service base

As any other construction, the construction of this Project will temporarily change the landscape. Construction sites will be organized to store construction materials and elements. Machinery will be used at places where WT and towers must be installed. Tower foundation pits will be dug out, towers will be assembled and erected, and conductors will be strung. On average, 4 days are needed to assemble and erect one tower. A work plan indicating the commencement of works and their direction shall be prepared by the general contractor prior to commencement of works and based on the capabilities of the contractor (number of employees, quantity and quality of equipment and tools). Materials will be transported to the construction site from other places. No sand or gravel or other pits will be quarried along the line route.

Construction and material storage sites will be visible, however only temporary features which constitute relatively little change compared to background of agricultural activities in the project area.

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance

The artificial appearance of wind turbines may have visually incongruous “industrial” associations for some, particularly in a predominantly natural landscape. Visual evidence of wind turbines cannot be avoided, reduced, or concealed, owing to their size and exposed location; therefore, effective mitigation is limited.

Daily and seasonal low sunlight conditions striking ridgelines and towers would tend to make them more visible and more prominent. Given the typical pale color of turbines, their color contrast with surroundings would likely be the least in the winter season, with less greening and more snow cover.

Mitigation Measures:

  • Turbine arrays and the turbine design would be integrated with the surrounding landscape.
  • The operator will provide visual order and unity among clusters of turbines (visual units) to avoid visual disruptions and perceived “disorder, disarray, or clutter”.
  • The operator will create visual uniformity in the shape, color, and size of rotor blades, nacelles, and towers.
  • The operator will use tubular towers. Tubular towers present a simpler profile and less complex surface characteristics and reflective/shading properties.
  • Components will be in proper proportion to one another. Nacelles and towers will be planned to form an aesthetic unit and will be combined with particular sizes and shapes in mind to achieve an aesthetic balance between the rotor, nacelle, and tower.
  • Color selections for turbines will be made to reduce visual impact and will be applied uniformly to tower, nacelle, and rotor, unless gradient or other patterned color schemes are used. As for the Novorossisk project, white towers were used.
  • The operator will use non-reflective paints and coatings to reduce reflection and glare. Turbines, visible ancillary structures, and other equipment will be painted before or immediately after installation.
  • Uncoated galvanized metallic surfaces will be avoided because they might create a stronger visual contrast, particularly as they oxidize and darken.
  • The operator will avoid placing substations or large operations buildings on high land features and along “skylines” that are visible from nearby sensitive view points
  • The operator will bury power collection cables or lines on the site in a manner that minimizes additional surface disturbance.
  • Operators will minimize disturbance and control erosion by avoiding steep slopes and by minimizing the amount of construction and ground clearing needed for roads, staging areas, and crane pads. Dust suppression techniques will be employed to minimize impacts of vehicular and pedestrian traffic, construction, and wind on exposed surface soils. Disturbed surfaces will be restored as closely as possible to their original contour and replanted immediately after, or contemporaneously with construction. Action should be prompt to limit erosion and to accelerate restoring the preconstruction color and texture of the landscape.
  • The wind development site will be maintained during operation. Inoperative or incomplete turbines cause the misperception in viewers that “wind power does not work” or that it is unreliable. Inoperative turbines will be completely repaired, replaced, or removed.
  • A decommissioning plan will be developed. Best practice with respect to waste management and recycling will be considered in developing the decommissioning plan.

17. Public and Occupational Health and Safety

Influences on public health such as Visual effect and Shadow flicker effect as well as preventive measures on these effects were earlier described; acoustic influence was singled out in a separate paragraph further. It dwells upon the other potential influences on a public health and safety in this section.

Impacts from Construction and corresponding Mitigation Measures

WPP construction, as any other building activity, can be potentially dangerous for the habitants of neighboring settlements.

To avoid any accidents most secured construction practices will be used, construction area will be bordered to prevent neighbor's visiting, visual caution signs will be erected.  

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance and corresponding Mitigation Measures

WPP

It is theoretically possible that turbine blades can fall off which can injure nearby people (for example, the shepherds, as there are no settlements on potentially dangerous distances according to WPP industrial safety measures). But practically the development of production technology and turbines erection reached such a high safety level, that the probability of blade hazards is statistically very small.

A more harmful effect can be caused by ice formation on the blades during the cold period resulting in pieces of ice being thrown away during blade motion. With the development of turbines and blades design a few technologies, allowing the prevention or reduction of this effect were elaborated, namely - 1) differential power curve; 2) vibration recording; 3) anemometer plausibility; 4) monitoring with ice sensor.

Vindkraft will adapt one of these technologies in order to provide WPP safe functioning when selecting turbine suppliers.

Electricity Substation and Service base

All technical solutions in terms of both design and equipment will be developed and adopted in keeping with the effective norms and rules, including explosion and fire safety rules, guidelines and state standards.

The following measures will be taken to prevent accidental contact with energized parts at substations:

  1. 1.protective fencing, temporary and permanent;
  2. 2.safe placement of energized parts;
  3. 3.improved insulation of energized parts;
  4. 4.insulation of workplaces;
  5. 5.protective disconnection;
  6. 6.alarms, blocks, safety signs.

The following measures will be taken to prevent from electrocution through touching metal non-energized parts that may become energized when insulation is damaged:

  1. 1.protective grounding;
  2. 2.zeroing;
  3. 3.potential leveling;
  4. 4.a system of protection wires;
  5. 5.protective disconnection;
  6. 6.insulation of non-energized parts;
  7. 7.electrical segmentation of the network;
  8. 8.insulation control;
  9. 9.grounding of short-circuit currents;
  10. 10.personnel protection equipment.

The substations will be equipped with water supply, heating and ventilation systems.

18. Noise

Noise is defined as any unwanted sound. Whether sound is perceived as such depends heavily on subjective factors as well as on measurable aspects such as how loud the sound is, how long it lasts and the tone of the sound.

Noise is measured in decibels (dB), which is a measure of the sound pressure level – the magnitude of the pressure variations in the air.

A change in sound level of 1 dB cannot be perceived except under laboratory conditions. An increase of 10 dB sounds roughly like a doubling of loudness. Measurements of environmental noise are usually made in dB (A), which includes a correction to allow for the sensitivity of the human ear. The response of any individual to noise is very subjective. Whether a noise is objectionable will depend on the type of noise (tonal, broadband, low frequency, or impulsive) and the circumstances and sensitivity of the person who hears it.

Impacts from Construction

WPP

Today when we define the noise level of wind installation we use only computational methods. Direct method of noise level measurement does not give the data about noisiness of wind installation, because it is impossible in the given moment to separate effectively the wind installation noise from the wind noise.

Table 2 : Noise origin

Noise origin

Noise pollution level, dB

Pain threshold of human hearing

120

The turbine noise of jet-engine over distance 250 m

105

The noise of coal hammer in 7 m

95

The noise of truck at a speed 48 km/h over distance in 100 m

65

The noise background in the office

60

The noise of car at a speed 64 km/h

55

The noise of wind turbine in 350 m

35—45

The noise background at night in the village

20—40

 

Impacts from Operation and Maintenance

WPP

As the technology has advanced, wind turbines have generally become quieter, but noise from wind turbines is still frequently raised as a public concern during the planning process for wind farms.

Wind turbines produce two categories of noise: mechanical and aerodynamic. These categories are associated with four types of noise (tonal, broadband, impulsive, and low-frequency). Recent improvements in the mechanical design of large wind turbines have resulted in significantly reduced mechanical noise. As a result, aerodynamic noise is the dominant source from modern wind turbines.

The maximum acoustic power level, that is 100dB, is observed in close proximity to the WT axis. However, due to the fact that Vestas OptiSpeed WT has a function of speed control, the noise effect can be set to an acceptable level.

The WT locations were chosen in order to respect the legal restrictions regarding noise (45 dB) in Ukraine.

According to the Ukrainian standards, GOST 12.1.003-83 Noise (Governmental sector directive document) and SNiP II-12-77 (Construction Norms and Rules), protection against noise should be considered in the technical design of an object in order to ensure the requirements of sanitary norms of noise on the adjacent territories to the object. The allowable noise level in residential areas should not exceed the parameters of sanitary zone approved by SCS 360-92*** (State Construction Standard (DBN)).

Table 5 : Noise level limits

Area

Equivalent noise level, dBA

Maximum noise level

From 7 till 23 hours (7 a.m. – 11 p.m.)

From 23 till 7 hours (23 p.m. – 7 a.m.)

From 7 till 23 hours (7 a.m. – 11 p.m.)

From 23 till 7 hours (23 p.m. – 7 a.m.)

Residential area

55

45

70

60

 

The sanitary norms define a minimum distance of 400 m between WT and residential area. Noise impact assessment was performed in compliance with Ukrainian standard SNiP II-12-77. As follows from the calculations, the noise level arising from WT operation in residential area is below the limit set in the sanitary norms. None of the receptors are concerned by a noise level above the limit of 45 dB(A).

Regular maintenance activities will include periodic site visits to wind turbines, communication cables, transmission lines, substations, and auxiliary structures. These activities will involve light- or medium-duty vehicle traffic with relatively low noise levels. Infrequent but noisy activities would be anticipated, such as road maintenance work with heavy equipment, or repair or replacement of old or inoperative wind turbines or auxiliary equipment. However, the anticipated level of noise impacts from maintenance activities would be far lower than that from construction activities.

Mitigation Measures

  • Noisy construction activities (including blasting) will be limited to the least noise-sensitive times of day (daytime only between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m.) and weekdays.
  • Whenever feasible, different noisy activities (e.g. blasting and earthmoving) will be scheduled to occur at the same time since additional sources of noise generally do not add a significant amount of noise. That is, less-frequent noisy activities will be less annoying than frequent less-noisy activities.
  • All equipment will have sound-control devices no less effective than those provided on the original equipment. All construction equipment used will be adequately muffled and maintained.
  • All stationary construction equipment (i.e. compressors and generators) will be located as far as practicable from nearby residences.
  • Nearby residents will be notified in advance of the occurrence of noisy activities during the construction period.
  • The WT choice will be made considering the technical performances and the noise produced.

19. Electromagnetic Interference

As with any large structure, wind turbines can potentially interfere with communication systems that use electromagnetic waves as the transmission medium (e.g. television, radio or microwave links). Any effect depends on the turbine design and location and the fact that wind turbine rotors are not stationary.

It is possible for wind turbines to cause interference to local TV reception either by obstruction or by reflection. Viewers situated forward of the wind farm (where the aerial is pointing through the turbines) may have their signals periodically obstructed by the rotating blades causing a ‘scattering’ of the signal. Viewers situated to the side of the wind farm may experience periodic reflections from the blades, giving rise to a delayed image or ‘ghost’.

Generally TV and radio interference problems are predictable and normally there is a range of solutions available.            

20. Impacts on Cultural Heritage

No archeological findings are situated in the place of the Project area. There are no archeologically valuable places in the range of potential impact of construction works for wind farms as well as roads and cables constructed for wind farm purposes.

21. Vibration

Source of a bearing turbine part vibration is its dynamic, rotating part, namely a rotor with blades.

Empirical Barkans formula testifies that the construction does not vibrate if provided that the static part of the turbine in 16 times exceeds on dynamic part weight. The weight of rotating components is nearby 55 tons, the weight of the static part - a WT-base complex - is about 1600 tons, i.e. a static part more than in 29 times is heavier its dynamic part. Accordingly clearing of vibration occurs due to small weight of vibrating parts in relation to all WT weight.

Thus, vibration of separate rotating WT elements completely fades at a level of a basic element of the base and does not influence adjoining ground.

Moreover, low-frequency vibrations transmitted through the ground dies out in a distance of 100 m. The minimum distance from the Project Site to the nearest residential building is 500 m. Therefore, in any event, low-frequency vibrations will not affect the nearby residential properties.

22. Environmental Risks and Hazards

22.1. WPP

One of the primary safety hazards of wind turbines occurs if a rotor blade breaks and parts are thrown off. This could occur as a result of rotor over-speed, although such an occurrence has been extremely rare and happens mostly with older and smaller turbines. Material fatigue can also cause a blade to break. The difficulty of predicting the trajectory of a broken rotor blade makes the quantitative determination of safety risk very uncertain. However, it is known that these types of events are very rare and the probability of a fragment hitting a person is even lower. A blade or turbine part has rarely travelled farther than 500 m from the tower; usually most pieces land within 100 to 200 m. With proper engineering design and quality control, blade throw rarely occurs.

A related issue, ice throw, can occur if ice builds up on the turbine blades. A sufficient safety zone or setback from residences, roads, and other public access areas will be held. In addition to blade and ice throws, these setbacks may also mitigate potential noise and visual impacts. Ultimately, any calculation of the risk for such incidents considers simultaneous land uses for the wind energy project that may cause individuals in addition to wind project workers to be in the vicinity of rotating blades.

Another potential public safety issue is unauthorized or illegal access to the site facilities and the potential for members of the public to attempt to climb towers, open electrical panels, or encounter other hazards. This kind of risk will be minimized by using warning signs and by using guards.

Dry vegetation and high winds may combine to cause a potential fire hazard around wind facilities. Under these conditions, fires can start for a variety of reasons, such as electrical shorts, insufficient equipment maintenance, contact with power lines, and lightning. As the WTGs comply with the international standards, this kind of risks will be minimized.

22.2. Substations

The greatest risk to substations is fire. In terms of its fire extinguishing equipment belongs to Group II. The substation will be equipped with automatic fire alarm.

Pursuant to "Guidelines for Designing Fire Prevention Measures and Fire Extinguishing Equipment at Power Installations" applicable at the time of construction, the substation will be equipped with the fire prevention and fire response equipment and procedures.