Economic impacts of wind farms on Scottish tourism: report

Report commissioned by Glasgow Caledonian University to assess whether government priorities for wind farms in Scotland are likely to have an economic impact on Scottish tourism.


1. "In view" was defined as four or more wind turbines in vision

2. These figures are the total number of bed spaces in affected hotels. The number of affected bed spaces is assumed to be 50% of this total (back v front)

3. Horeca is the 3 industry grouping Hospitality, Recreation Services and Catering. Although these are important recipients of Tourist Expenditure they incorporate substantial non-tourist expenditures and cover only half tourist expenditure, the other most important recipient industries being retail, fuel and transport. However together they provide a useful industry based comparative measure.

4. Experience being defined as a view of at least 4 wind turbines at less than 15km for more than 1 minute.

5. World Wind Energy Association figures for end 2006, updated to allow for Braes of Doune wind farm inaugurated on 9 February 2007.

6. Anchoring occurs when too much weight is given to early events. For example, when forecasting transplant success rates, a very experienced heart surgeon may well understandably take into account the very low success rates of the early years. In practice these are likely to be irrelevant.

7. The accuracy of economic forecasts of GDP is around 1.5%. This seems extremely good except it gives a range for growth typically between 1% and 4%; rather less good.

8. Suppose the respondent states a WTP of £60 for a room before and £50 after and the room price is £40. In the short term the impact will be (£60-£50)/£40 =25%. In the long term it will be (£60-£50)/(£60-£40) = 50%. In the short term expenditure is maintained at the expense of the proprietors. In the long term this largesse disappears.

9. The impact on spending of wealth changes is central to modern macro-economics, increases in nominal wealth do induce increases in spending. However it is equally true that a decrease in house price to a new arrival in an area will divert expenditure from mortgage payments made outside an area to expenditure within.

10. Subjective Evaluation: 1= Limited Use possibly misleading; 2=Limited Use; 3= Some Use but limitations; 4= Important, some limitations. 5= Very Important

11. NFO/System3 (2002), Investigation in to the Potential Impact of Wind Farms on Tourism in Scotland

12. Tourism in Scotland 2005 (VisitScotland, 2006)





17. Hayes and Boag, 2004. By 'modern methodologies' we mean the Recommended Methodological Framework for Tourism Satellite Accounts ( OECD, United Nations and Eurostat, 2001)

18. Scottish Renewables Forum: Scottish Renewables Economics Impact Report 07. Glasgow 2007.

19. Argyll(2002). Argyll and Bute Structure Plan 2002

20. Development Planning Services Oban, Lorne and the Isles; Land at Stacain

21. Planning Advice Note 45 (2002): Renewable Energy Technologies

22. AMEC (2004) Kyle Wind Farm Proposal, Cumulative Landscape and Visual Assessment


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