Newport solar farm decision due

A 35-ACRE solar farm planned near Llanmartin involving more than 28,000 solar panels could get the go ahead next week.

Roger Lewis, of Court Farm, Magor Road, Newport, has applied for planning permission to build a 35 acre solar farm on agricultural land north west of the Newport village.

However the Langstone Community Council has objected, claiming it would be a blot on the landscape.

Officers have recommended the plans for approval, but the decision is up to Newport council planning committee which is meeting on Wednesday.

It is claimed by the applicant that the solar farm could supply 1,650 homes with electricity, generating an estimated 8,100 megawatts per year.

The site would be comprised of around 28,460 solar panels and would run for 25 years – at which point it would be decommissioned.

Agents acting for the applicant claim that the amount of carbon dioxide saved annually from the solar farm could come to 3,807 tonnes each year.

According to planning documents, Langstone Community Council claimed that the development would be a blot on the landscape and would spoil views from houses and footpaths in the area.

Liaison between the developer and the community council has been patchy, the community council has told Newport planning officials.

Objections had been received from neighbours, with the authority receiving seven representations arguing that glare from the solar farm would be detrimental and that the proposal isn’t adequately screened, among other issues.

In recommending plans for approval, officers said that overall the proposal was considered acceptable.

“The changes to the landscape and visual amenity of observers is not considered to be unacceptably harmful unto itself,” a report to planning committee by officers says.

“The development will deliver the clear benefit of low carbon electricity generation which outweighs the limited visual harm of the proposal.

“In highway terms the development is acceptable and the protected trees on the site can be preserved.”

Comments (6)

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10:44am Fri 30 May 14

-trigg- says...

Solar farms definitely have a part to play in future energy generation but they still suffer from some fairly large flaws that make them of limited use - namely that they can only operate during daylight hours, and then only when there isn't too much cloud cover. Also, although costs are falling, solar remains one of the most exensive generation methods available.

As those who read this site regularly will know, I am not a believer in Global Warming but I would also take the amount of CO2 emissions saved each year with a large pinch of salt. That figure presupposes the farm operating at maximum capacity and with no transmission losses. The amount of CO2 generated during the manufacture, maintainence and decommissioning of the plant have also not been factored in.

As a rule, solar power is currently only suitable for daytime industrial use, and only when an alternate power source is readily available. As such, it makes sense for any solar power farm to be sited on brownfield land next to the industrial plants that would make use of it rather than on "greenfield" sites such as this
Solar farms definitely have a part to play in future energy generation but they still suffer from some fairly large flaws that make them of limited use - namely that they can only operate during daylight hours, and then only when there isn't too much cloud cover. Also, although costs are falling, solar remains one of the most exensive generation methods available. As those who read this site regularly will know, I am not a believer in Global Warming but I would also take the amount of CO2 emissions saved each year with a large pinch of salt. That figure presupposes the farm operating at maximum capacity and with no transmission losses. The amount of CO2 generated during the manufacture, maintainence and decommissioning of the plant have also not been factored in. As a rule, solar power is currently only suitable for daytime industrial use, and only when an alternate power source is readily available. As such, it makes sense for any solar power farm to be sited on brownfield land next to the industrial plants that would make use of it rather than on "greenfield" sites such as this -trigg-
  • Score: 0

12:23pm Fri 30 May 14

paddyparry says...

You are not correct on this. They can be used whetehr there is cloud cover or not, only not as efficiently. It was the old panels that could only operate in direct sunlight.
You are not correct on this. They can be used whetehr there is cloud cover or not, only not as efficiently. It was the old panels that could only operate in direct sunlight. paddyparry
  • Score: 1

2:58pm Fri 30 May 14

Dafydd y Garreg Wen says...

Whilst I don't know the details of this particular scheme, I would not mind betting that it is to be owned and operated by an SPV. This means, that during the life of the project, and despite claims nobody knows how long that will be, the owners will milk if for all it is worth. When the panels are clapped out and need removing, at great cost, to a recycling plant, then the company will be wound up leaving some other sucker to pick up the costs. Truely, yet another politicians folly, with the FIT giving investors index linked and excessive rewards, all paid for by the consumer. They are also a blot on the landscape, and if we are to have them, then they should be on the roofs of houses or industrial buildings and not open farmland. I wish the objectors well in their campaign, but I suspect where big money is concerned, nobody will listen.
Whilst I don't know the details of this particular scheme, I would not mind betting that it is to be owned and operated by an SPV. This means, that during the life of the project, and despite claims nobody knows how long that will be, the owners will milk if for all it is worth. When the panels are clapped out and need removing, at great cost, to a recycling plant, then the company will be wound up leaving some other sucker to pick up the costs. Truely, yet another politicians folly, with the FIT giving investors index linked and excessive rewards, all paid for by the consumer. They are also a blot on the landscape, and if we are to have them, then they should be on the roofs of houses or industrial buildings and not open farmland. I wish the objectors well in their campaign, but I suspect where big money is concerned, nobody will listen. Dafydd y Garreg Wen
  • Score: 2

5:55pm Fri 30 May 14

Stevenboy says...

Paving over countryside to do this is plain stupid. Is there nothing the 'green' excuse can't be used for?
Paving over countryside to do this is plain stupid. Is there nothing the 'green' excuse can't be used for? Stevenboy
  • Score: 1

7:15pm Fri 30 May 14

Floppy backed says...

Dafydd y Garreg Wen wrote:
Whilst I don't know the details of this particular scheme, I would not mind betting that it is to be owned and operated by an SPV. This means, that during the life of the project, and despite claims nobody knows how long that will be, the owners will milk if for all it is worth. When the panels are clapped out and need removing, at great cost, to a recycling plant, then the company will be wound up leaving some other sucker to pick up the costs. Truely, yet another politicians folly, with the FIT giving investors index linked and excessive rewards, all paid for by the consumer. They are also a blot on the landscape, and if we are to have them, then they should be on the roofs of houses or industrial buildings and not open farmland. I wish the objectors well in their campaign, but I suspect where big money is concerned, nobody will listen.
you what? Farmers are told to diversify, the land has no value unless its built on. With animals on it its run as a series debt. Why cant people make money from it - you are allowed to make money from everything else? You cannot milk it either, you get given a land rental figure which is good but not enormous and it doesnt increase its a figure that index linked but you cant go asking for more - the land owner is not going to be rich from it for sure. There is a good life span on these modern panels, they are efficient and lets face it we all need to embrace renewables as they do on the continent yet in the UK we are about 10 yrs behind. Its clean efficient energy that is not a blot on the landscape against a windfarm or power station. As for roofs - yes you can but all the roofs have to be facing all the same direction and the land has to be a considerable acerage to take it viable to connect to the network.

The trouble with this country is that too many people have pointless ill-informed opinions on things instead of getting the facts. Drives me mad is that no one wants dirty energy, they dont want to see it, they dont want fracking, they want endless energy which is still cheap but solar panels are fantasic, provide clean energy and take up little room in the whole scale. About time we embraced modern energy instead of moaning about everything thats technology driven - rather see solar than endless housing estates.
[quote][p][bold]Dafydd y Garreg Wen[/bold] wrote: Whilst I don't know the details of this particular scheme, I would not mind betting that it is to be owned and operated by an SPV. This means, that during the life of the project, and despite claims nobody knows how long that will be, the owners will milk if for all it is worth. When the panels are clapped out and need removing, at great cost, to a recycling plant, then the company will be wound up leaving some other sucker to pick up the costs. Truely, yet another politicians folly, with the FIT giving investors index linked and excessive rewards, all paid for by the consumer. They are also a blot on the landscape, and if we are to have them, then they should be on the roofs of houses or industrial buildings and not open farmland. I wish the objectors well in their campaign, but I suspect where big money is concerned, nobody will listen.[/p][/quote]you what? Farmers are told to diversify, the land has no value unless its built on. With animals on it its run as a series debt. Why cant people make money from it - you are allowed to make money from everything else? You cannot milk it either, you get given a land rental figure which is good but not enormous and it doesnt increase its a figure that index linked but you cant go asking for more - the land owner is not going to be rich from it for sure. There is a good life span on these modern panels, they are efficient and lets face it we all need to embrace renewables as they do on the continent yet in the UK we are about 10 yrs behind. Its clean efficient energy that is not a blot on the landscape against a windfarm or power station. As for roofs - yes you can but all the roofs have to be facing all the same direction and the land has to be a considerable acerage to take it viable to connect to the network. The trouble with this country is that too many people have pointless ill-informed opinions on things instead of getting the facts. Drives me mad is that no one wants dirty energy, they dont want to see it, they dont want fracking, they want endless energy which is still cheap but solar panels are fantasic, provide clean energy and take up little room in the whole scale. About time we embraced modern energy instead of moaning about everything thats technology driven - rather see solar than endless housing estates. Floppy backed
  • Score: -3

7:51pm Fri 30 May 14

Sid Bonkers says...

Lets face it green energy or not solar panels are the ugliest things under the sun (when we get any) - literally. Even the government is pulling the plug on them (sorry) - literally. I thought we were trying to be self sufficient in food not consigning farm land to solar panels in one of the nicer areas of Newport. Seems bonkers to me.
Lets face it green energy or not solar panels are the ugliest things under the sun (when we get any) - literally. Even the government is pulling the plug on them (sorry) - literally. I thought we were trying to be self sufficient in food not consigning farm land to solar panels in one of the nicer areas of Newport. Seems bonkers to me. Sid Bonkers
  • Score: 1

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