Where can I locate windfarms on Anglesey? - Determining the best location
One thing that GIS is very good at is looking through layers of spatial information to determine the best location for something. All the land potentially available is cut down based on its suitability until you are left (hopefully) with a site that is ideal and matches all your criteria.
For example this could be the most profitable place to grow a new type of crop, the best locations for a factory or housing estate, or the best location for a windfarm with all its restrictions both environmental and human.
Windfarms have many types of restrictions, the examples below is a very simplified list. They should not be within:
- 3 km of an airport
- 1 km of a National Trust property
- 1 km of a Scenic Area
- 1 km of a Forest Park
- 1.5 km of a town centroid
- 1 km of a small town or village centroid
- 750 metres of a small village, hamlet or isolated settlement
- 250 metres of a lake, marsh or reservoir
- 300 metres of a motorway, A-road or B-road
- 250 metres of a railway
- 200 metres of a river or canal
- 250 metres of a radio or TV mast
To do this analysis required data from many different sources. So first the data is collected.
Then the buffers around the various features are applied.
By combining these data you can determine those locations left that are available as sites for the windfarm. Usually the ultimate step in this type of analysis is calculating the areas of these locations and eliminating those that are too small.