Solar Farms More Popular Than Fracking Says Poll
By Anne Lewis-Schneider
Solar Industry to Improve Community Ties
The Solar Trade Association (STA) has reiterated its commitment to take public concerns into consideration with all future developments of solar farms. In a set of regulations that will have to be adhered to, solar farm developers are pledging to take local community concerns seriously, and to strengthen ties with local residents where solar farms are to be erected. The concerns of locals will be taken into consideration and the support of local communities will be sought in consultation with areas that are good locations for solar farms.
Solar farms will have to take into consideration a number of concerns expressed by rural areas that have expressed concern that farm lands will be lost to solar panel developments. General feeling is that solar farms will be a better option than fracking and this has been shown in a recent poll to gauge popularity for solar energy farms. One of the stipulations is that buying and employing must be local as far as is possible.
Land that is used for solar energy projects should be either low grade farm land or land that is unsuitable for agriculture. Protected areas will not be utilised for solar projects and where possible visual impact to the countryside will be minimised. Biodiversity must be taken into consideration, with areas used for solar energy combining their enterprise with grazing for sheep, pheasant breeding, bee-keeping and wildflower cultivation being considered as good options. This is to be coupled with wildlife conservation so that land is not wasted. It has been noted that residents are worried about the visual impact of solar farms on their beautiful countryside.
Popularity for solar projects is high according to a survey conducted by YouGov, with locals preferring solar energy projects to fracking. It would appear that solar is the lesser of two evils. Communities are beginning to realise the value of low carbon projects with almost two-thirds in favour of good quality, well-constructed and thought out farms that are ecologically sustainable. It is slowly becoming a reality that climate change will have a negative effect on rural areas and renewable energy is needed to address this problem. STA’s chief executive Mr Paul Barwell has said that well thought out solar projects that take the local residents into consideration will bolster the development of national energy security.
Head Office: EATON HOUSE, STATION ROAD, LEEDS, LS20 8XB Company Registration: 4704157 Vat Registration: 817013852