More than 100 people oppose solar farm development

The site of the proposed solar farm in Pilmoor Image source, Google
Image caption,

The site of the proposed solar farm is located in Pilmoor, North Yorkshire

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Plans for a solar farm the size of more than 150 football pitches have sparked concern over the number of renewable energy projects in the same area.

North Yorkshire Council’s planning officers discussed the proposal for a 94-hectare site in Pilmoor, between Thirsk and Easingwold, ahead of a strategic planning committee meeting on Tuesday.

Some of the 115 objections to the council from residents were connected to the proximity of the development to existing solar farms.

The proposed development would have an “unacceptable impact for our local community”, one local said.

They highlighted other sites that are either operating or going through the planning process, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

The member of the public said: “The combined built-up area of Raskelf and Easingwold is only about 180 hectares, so these solar farms will be taking up more land than these two settlements.

“This concentration of development and its uneven distribution is just wrong.”

Raskelf Parish Council also opposed the plans, claiming it would have an adverse impact on the surrounding environment and landscape.

The scheme attracted 123 representations to the council from residents, of which eight were in support.

Application documents lodged with the council claim the renewable energy scheme would offset around 21,500 tonnes of carbon each year.

Its economic benefits would include £160,000 of annual business rates paid to the council, the papers said.

The document adds: “The proposed scheme would provide a significant amount of decentralised electricity to the area and support the transition to electric vehicles and heating.”

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