Concerns Raised Over Fresh Lightsource Renewable Energy Somerset Solar Farm Bid
- Published: Wednesday, 18 December 2013 08:49
Lightsource Renewable Energy Ltd has outlined plans to put panels on just over 44 acres of land off Somerton Door Drove. The company submitted a request to South Somerset District Council relating to the proposed solar farm.
It wanted to determine if it was necessary for an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) to accompany a planning application. This is an early stage of the planning process and planners ruled that an EIA was not needed if the plans progress. As part of the request, the company outlined its plans and said the panels could power more than 2,000 homes.
A statement submitted to the district council said: "The proposal will provide enough energy to power approximately 2,100 typical homes, making a valuable contribution to the energy requirements of the local area."
The proposed site lies just north of the Bancombe Trading Estate and neighbours a site owned by local businessman Tony Canvin that was earmarked for a solar farm in January.
Rachael Humphreys, of Solar Power Generation Ltd, submitted plans for a 15.6 hectare solar park on Mr Canvin's land between Somerton and Pitney at Little Park Farm, Park Lane. Mr Canvin said the scheme was abandoned because there were concerns that Roman remains may be buried underneath his land.
He said: "My land is about a quarter of a mile from this other site so it may not have the same problems but I don't have any idea.
"I don't have any problem with these new plans, there's nothing wrong with it. "We have got to generate electricity somehow and I don't see any problem with doing it this way."
Both Somerton Town Council and Pitney Parish Council raised concerns over the Park Lane scheme. A number of residents raised concerns that it would spoil the natural scenery of the area. But Lightsource Renewable Energy Ltd said its proposals for Somerton Door Drove would be screened from view.
Its statement said: "It is considered that the vegetation around the site boundaries and in the surrounding area will help to screen the site from the majority of public vantage points.
"Furthermore the topography of the land in the surrounding area will help to restrict distant views of the site. "There will be some views of the site from a footpath which runs near to the northern boundary of the site, however the proposed solar farm will only have a limited impact on this and additional vegetation planting can be proposed."
If the proposals progress it is hoped the solar farm will be on the site for a minimum of 30 years.
Source: this is Somerset