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MCDM analysis of wind energy in Turkey: decision making based on environmental impact
Development of new wind energy projects require complex planning process involving many social, technical, economic, environmental, political concerns, and different agents such as investors, utilities, governmental agencies, or social groups. The aim of this study is to develop a tool combining Geographic Information System (GIS) and Multi-Criteria Decision-Making (MCDM) methodologies, and its application for Turkey as a case study. A variety of constraints and criteria were identified based on a literature review and regulations gathered from variety of agencies, use of which resulted in determination of infeasible sites. Then, pairwise comparisons were carried out using analytic hierarchy process as the MCDM method to estimate relative importance of the criteria, and to visualize a suitability map with three classes. As the final stage, decision making was carried out based on environmental impact where 45.5% of the Turkish territory was found as infeasible area. Sixty percent of the remaining area are covered by the moderate suitability class, followed by the highly suitable area (20.3%) and low suitable area (19.8%). The output of this study can be used by energy planners to estimate the extent that wind energy can be developed based on public perception, administrative, and environmental aspects.