Should Scott County allow community solar gardens on private rural properties as a permitted land use? If yes, what types of restrictions, if any, do you support to lessen impact to neighboring landowners and the community at large?
Users who supported this statement...
Richard Beaudin inside District2
April 15, 2015, 7:18 AM
I am in favor of solar gardens, but they should be limited to smaller plots of no more than 20 acres and they should be screened from neighboring residences. Also, there should be requirements to maintain the land cover during the lease and bond requirement for removal of equipment at end of lease if not renewed. I also would suggest that the county put solar on all major roof tops that are county owned where practical.
...also supported these 2 statements
April 11, 2015, 1:23 PM
I am against supporting this principally because of the size. 20 acres of these would be an ungodly sight. Think about the windmills in the southwest corner of the state and realize that this will be significantly worse.
Additionally, it is unclear how the property will be maintained. It isn't clear if the land owner or the leasing company would be responsible but given the investment I suspect a majority of the site maintenance will fall to the leasing company and their interest will be in operating the equipment at peak efficiency instead of weighing the costs of making the field fit in with the surrounding area (can you even say that about 5 to 20 acres of ugly shiny collectors?).
I do not know but I wonder what the environmental impact of such a large installation would be. If this goes into a wooded area the loss of trees and wildlife habitat could be a concern. If this goes into open fallow fields than again wildlife habitat. If this goes into productive farm field that we lose the economic value of that land. If this goes into areas that are part of the build out than we lose homestead area for 20 years of longer.
April 15, 2015, 8:23 AM
Solar panels used in settings where the aesthetics are already lacking, where they do not pose a threat to habitat or economic development loss, and where they are under the overall maintenance and responsibility of the private owner are ideal in my opinion. To put in rural 20 acres plots of panels would negate all three of these things. You would have the aesthetic loss of looking at shiny metal all the time, habitat would be impeded and fragmented more than it already is in this county and having maintenance responsibilities lying on someone sitting at a desk watching graphs of electrical productivity who has never been to the site, doesn't know what the ground conditions look like or how it affects the surrounding area is a bad idea. Put solar panels in smart places: roof tops, both residential and commercial. Or go one step further and create rooftops out of solar panels for over the increasing number of transit parking lots. It would not deter from aesthetics, habitat or economic value, and it would provide additional protection to vehicles from fading due to sun damage, unfavorable precipitation and help keep them cooler in the summer shade.