Located in one of the best wind resource areas in the southern coast of Vietnam, AC Energy and its partner, The Blue Circle, strongly pushed for the adoption of new technologies in the Mui Ne wind farm. The turbines carry the largest rotor diameter for an onshore project in Asia at 158 meters, the first blades to be transported in two pieces before assembly on site. These larger capacity machines lower the cost of energy and enhance the competitiveness of wind energy.
*As of Dec 2020 (Phase 1)
Creating impact through sustainable materials
At AC Energy and The Blue Circle's Mui Ne wind farm in Binh Thuan province, Vietnam, sustainability has been ingrained from the planning stage to construction, to eventually impact environmental and social programs for its host community.
With high wind speed and other weather conditions affecting the mainly red soil in the area, the slope is at high risk to erode and spill to the road leading to the project site, possibly halting operations. This could lead to higher maintenance cost or loss of revenue for the development if unresolved.
Utilizing available local and sustainable materials, the project team developed recycled bags made of jute plant, a common and cost-efficient product with an estimated degradation period of less than three years. Geotextile, a permeable fabric material with the capacity to reinforce the slope, was also used to allow the grass to grow along the slope and eventually become a cover layer to replace the bag and geotextile, while greening the project site at the same time.
A sustainable solution that maximizes the wind farm's operational efficiency, this geotextile initiative develops opportunities for further economic and environmental benefits for AC Energy's host community.
Assessing Environmental Impact
The Mui Ne wind farm project team conducted a comprehensive Environmental and Social Impact Assessment to identify potential risks to birds and bats through two rounds of baseline surveys for biodiversity conducted in two seasons in 2019. In addition, other environmental studies (including air quality, noise and vibration, water quality) were undertaken to comply with national and international regulations and ensure the impact of the wind farm would not be significant. The project's Environmental Protection Plan was approved in Dec 2019. The team also appointed third party experts to study the area's biodiversity, soil, water, and air quality.
The Mui Ne wind farm project team participates in community clean-up days organized by local NGOs, like “Keep Mui Ne Nice,” and joins every first Thursday of the month in Mui Ne city. The activity brings volunteers together to clean, repair, improve public spaces, and create awareness for the local community to care for their environment.
Mitigating COVID-19 Impact
The Mui Ne community is highly dependent on tourism, and was impacted greatly by the pandemic.
To support the host community, the project team provided medical masks and hand sanitizers to the local Disease Prevention Committee and donated tonnes of rice to the “Rice ATM” located in Mui Ne City and Thien Nghiep Commune to Vice chairman of Phan Thiet PC. of Phan Thiet PC.
Inroads to Progress During its construction period, the Mui Ne wind farm utilized the existing dual carriageway of Provincial Road No. 715 to connect the access road, which was specifically developed to serve as the main access to the site for construction vehicles and for operations and maintenance activities. After the construction was completed, the access road was shared for public use, thereby contributing to the improvement of the local infrastructure system and transportation for the community.
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