Assessing the seasonal characteristics of wind and the potential for wind energy over North Eastern Uganda
Opejo, Erasmus Jr
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Wind energy is derived from differential solar heating of the earth by the sun and the irregularities and non-linearity of the surface of the earth. The assessment of wind energy potential in any area is vital before making a decision for the installation of wind energy generating power plants. This study aimed to assess of the wind energy potential over Northeastern Uganda. The analysis is based on the European Centre for Medium range Weather Forecast Re-Analysis (ERA-interim) dataset for the period of ten years (2010-2019). The data used in this report include monthly averages of wind speed at 10 metre height which was then extrapolated to different heights, surface roughness, Uganda towns, reserves and populated areas obtained from geoportal. The Weibull and Rayleigh distribution methods are used in this study to analyze the wind speed data. According to this study it is noted that the peak of the monthly average wind speeds is observed in the month of April, the lowest average wind speeds are observed in the month of January, followed by October, December and November. The trend in the variation of monthly average wind speeds is noted to be decreasing at a rate of - 0.1703m/s/month. Average wind speeds are observed to be high from March to June which experience average wind speeds between 4m/s and 4.5m/s, average wind speeds decrease from June to January and an increase from January to March. The highest average wind speeds are observed in the year 2017 with an average value of 4.2 m/s and the lowest average wind speeds were experienced in 2016 followed by 2019 giving the lowest average available wind power observed to be 11.4 Watts in 2016 and the highest being 46.7 Watts in 2017. The study recommends that the government should establish supportive policies to ensure that a clean energy transition is achieved in order to fulfil the ambitions of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) agenda regarding SDG 7 (affordable and clean energy) and SDG 13 (climate action). Approaches in energy management should be set to propose solutions regarding the extraction, supply, consumption of wind energy as well as investment, research, and development of energy systems.