On January 6, Richmond County’s Planning Commission sat down at the Richmond County Courthouse to discuss a Special Exception Permit Application with representatives from Strata Solar about a potential Solar Farm that may be constructed in Richmond County. The panel included Harry Smith, John W. Lewis, Glenn Bowen, Rick Cox, Darnell Clayton, J.R. Fidler, Cassandra Jackson, Brian Jackson, Brian Mothershead and Miriam James Packett.

During the meeting, representatives from Strata Solar presented their application along with information describing the solar farm’s benefits, impacts and timeline for Richmond County. The solar project is projected to contribute nearly $200,000 of additional tax revenue to the county. The Strata Solar application is the first solar farm application Richmond County has ever received and has caused some concerns from local landowners who live close to the potential solar farm site.

After receiving letters from Strata Solar about the solar farm application, landowners who will be affected by the project started their own independent research and grew weary of the potential development. Landowners on Cedar Grove Road and Maon Road stated that they feel like guinea pigs and that they are nervous of the solar panels’ chemical runoff as well as wildlife and property values. One landowner stated that they researched that many solar panels are coated in Teflon and PSAS chemicals.

For the full article, pick up the latest Northumberland Echo 1/22/20