Ricardo Vidal, a wind energy fan from Portugal, is currently topping the voting league in EWEA’s campaign to get every turbine in Europe adopted. His turbine in Altdorf, northern Germany has received an impressive 346 votes putting him in good stead to win the competition to visit a wind farm. We caught up with him…
EWEA: Why do you support wind energy?
Vidal: I support wind energy because in my opinion all of us should give our own, even if small, contribution to a better world. A cleaner world where the environment has an important place in our society, and this way we can ensure that the world is a green and prosperous place to live in.
EWEA: What motivated you to adopt a turbine?
Vidal: First of all I wanted to be part of an interesting campaign with a common aim, and then I was attracted to the possibility to show and alert all my friends to the necessity of the place of wind energy in the world agenda.
EWEA: Where are you from and is there any wind energy in your area?
Vidal: I’m original from Portugal, a country where nearly 45% of electricity in the grid will come from renewable sources this year. Portugal has the third biggest ratio of wind energy produced per inhabitant in Europe, as well as being the fifth country in Europe for installed wind power capacity.
EWEA: Would you like to see more wind energy in your region?
Vidal: Of course the answer can only be yes. Since we have the wind conditions that justify it, wind energy will always be a strategically good move that comes with a huge range of advantages. For example saving the environment, creating new jobs for the region/country, improving the share of power fuelled by renewable energies, and so on.
EWEA: What do you think the main benefits of wind energy are?
Vidal: Wind energy is a safe and clean energy that goes together with environmental respect. We all still have fresh in our memories the images of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico when, for more than 80 days, millions of gallons of oil were spewed into the gulf, raising the question about the risks of long-term environmental damage.
EWEA: Where did you hear of our campaign?
Vidal: I heard about the “Breath of fresh air” campaign from a colleague. I’m actually working in Hamburg – Germany, the country in Europe with a biggest global installed wind power capacity.
EWEA: How do you think you can make Europe’s decision-makers wake up to the benefits of wind energy?
Vidal: The only way we have to alert them is to show good results on the use of wind energy, and we are doing this already. Slowly they are starting to receive the message and they are starting to approve some measures. For example, the American president Barack Obama’s goal of having 20-25% of America’s electricity produced from renewable sources by 2025, the European goals for 2020, and the national policies of some countries creating incentives for the renewable energies.
EWEA: Do you have any other comments or stories about wind power?
Vidal: I just want to close this interview congratulating EWEA for this successful idea and campaign. Go on with the good work.