Pupils from St John’s PS in Carnlough have been given a close-up look at green energy in action during a visit to an East Antrim wind farm.
About 50 young people travelled to Carn Hill wind farm in Newtownabbey to mark Global Wind Day.
The trip was organised by renewable energy company Gaelectric in partnership with wind developer ABO Wind NI.
Patrick McClughan, head of corporate affairs at Gaelectric, explained why it is important for young people to understand wind energy and its potential: “Global Wind Day is a day for discovering wind, its power and the possibilities it holds to reshape our energy systems, decarbonise our economies and boost jobs and growth.
“It is critically important that our young people understand the importance of natural renewable resources and gain an insight into the technology used in this field.
“This visit provides these young people with an opportunity to find out more about wind energy, how it can be captured to generate electricity and how this can in turn benefit local communities.”
Anne Marie Mc Hugh, Vice Principal St John’s PS, added: “The visit to Carn Hill Wind Farm has been a great success as the pupils were able to view first-hand how a turbine within a wind farm operates.
“The P6 and P7 pupils have been learning about wind energy in class.
“Global Wind Day provides a perfect opportunity for them to visit a wind farm, meet experts, have an informative tour of the wind farm site and also have the chance to see and learn about turbines.
“It is important that the pupils know about the advantages of wind energy and the importance of renewable energy and the role that this can play in our day to day life by reducing energy costs.”
Tamasin Fraser from ABO Wind NI said: “We have been working with a host of schools over the past 12 months, educating young people on the need for clean, green energy through our Renewable Energy Awareness Programme.
“It is fascinating to see how knowledgeable and interested young people are in our environment and we must do our best to support them.”
The £20m Carn Hill wind farm is Gaelectric’s first operational wind farm in Northern Ireland and was officially opened in May 2013. It consists of six wind turbines with a blade tip height of 99.5m, generates sufficient renewable power to meet the electricity demand of nearly 8,000 homes on an annual basis.
Global Wind Day is coordinated by the European Wind Energy Association and the Global Wind Energy Council.