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A solar farm capable of providing energy for 15,000 homes could be built on land near Lichfield.

The 256 acre scheme is being planned on land at Haunton Farm, which is located between Haunton and Harlaston.

The site earmarked for a solar farm in Haunton

A public consultation has been launched with a view to a formal planning application being launched.

A spokesperson said:

“We have identified this site as a potentially suitable location for a renewable energy development which can contribute positively to the UK’s transition from imported fossil fuels to home grown, de-carbonised green energy, and help to reverse the effects of climate change and protect future generations.

“The site is relatively flat and is not constrained by environmental designations.

“The scheme will not therefore cause any unacceptable visual harm and will be largely hidden behind hedges.

“It is also poorer quality farmland. Due to the amount of land needed, the scheme cannot fit in an urban area and requires a countryside location.

“Importantly there is capacity on the local electricity grid and a viable point of connection nearby.

“This site is therefore very well suited to the proposed development.”

The public consultation will be launched on Monday (13th July) at www.hauntonsolar.com.

Ross

Founder of Lichfield Live and editor of the site.

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10 Comments

  1. All the land shown in the photographs seems to be productive arable land. I think these schemes, be they public or private, are best suited to the very poorest land. It is slightly ironic that to reduce a carbon footprint you would cause another by increasing food mileage production. I am all for alternative energy but it does require careful consideration of loss and gain. The National Grid is never far from anywhere these days so the infrastructure aspect is not much of a problem.

  2. Fantastic idea.

    &PhilipAllso

    The problem is – you could say that about most of Staffordshire. We’re fortunate to live in a county that is very green and largely suitable for arable crop production. These sorts of thing have to go somewhere.

    The issue is, as a country, we’re fast running out of usable land. What with protected green space, land identified Or used as farming/arable, countryside, land earmarked for housing/commercial dwelling……etc…it’s a real balancing act.

  3. Great news! Solar’s even cheaper than people realise. The levelized cost is based on a 25 year life expectancy, but the average utility plant lasts 32.5 years, and the average home solar system is still producing 80%+ of its power after 25 years. There are solar panels in California that are 40 years old and still producing 80% of its original power. Better built ones now might still be producing power in 50 years. According to a 2012 study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the average degradation rate for panels is between 0.5% to 0.8% per year. In fact, 78% of systems tested had a degradation rate of less than 1% per year. That means that after 25 years of use, about 4 out of 5 solar panels still operate at 75% efficiency or better. Not bad!
    If homeowners, club owners, factory owners etc realised that they could be up for decades of free or almost free power – we’d see installations soar even more. The solar industry just needs to get the message out.

  4. I do take your point Greg but only 30% of farmed land in the country is designated as arable. The point about Solar Farms is that they can be anywhere. The fact the electricity is locally produced is absolutely immaterial.
    There are other issues, like change of use and any future consequences that might lead to. You could build at least five thousand houses on 256 acres. How many local people will lose their jobs for the proposed change? How will the local area be impacted? What does the food production loss amount too.
    Green energy is very important but it should not be used as an expedient for every private enterprise. This is about wealth generation as well as electricity. If I were a local I think I would be quite concerned.

  5. Didn’t we see a similar scheme given permission alongside the railway line at Curborough a few years ago and has now got planning permission for a housing estate near Curborough village ? Always spectical this grumpy old man !!!! You give developers an inch and theyl take a yard in my opinion ?

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