Council voices concern with energy projects on farmland

By The Associated Press

The Council on Environmental Quality wants Connecticut lawmakers and state environmental officials to encourage developers to build energy projects on previously developed sites, such as landfills and industrial lands.

 

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The Council on Environmental Quality wants Connecticut lawmakers and state environmental officials to encourage developers to build energy projects on previously developed sites, such as landfills and industrial lands.

The council is raising concerns in a new report about the surge in proposals to build large solar electricity-generating facilities on farmland and forest lands.

Susan Merrow, the council's chairwoman, says the desire for land conservation and more renewable energy in Connecticut don't have to be conflict. She says the organization envisions a "future with ample solar energy, farms and forests."

The report recommends the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection give "meaningful weight" to environmental siting criteria when choosing renewable energy projects. It also calls for utility-scale solar developments to obtain a special certificate that requires a detailed siting review.

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