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Old 01-02-2013, 03:44 PM
 
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Has anyone heard if residents were able to stop the solar panel farm that the power company is to put in at Ridgecrest? 1200 acres leased to the company for the facility footprint and 400 acres I think for the panels. Supposed to be the biggest such facility in the area.

Was in the Black Mountain News and Citizen Times supplement.

Just hoping
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Old 01-02-2013, 06:58 PM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
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It looks like there will be a public hearing on it this month. "The hearing is scheduled for 7 p.m. January 9 in District Courtroom 1 in the basement of the Buncombe County Courthouse, 60 Court Plaza in Asheville." Maybe you could go?

Concerns voiced on Ridgecrest solar project - AdvantageGreen

The article above links to the full Citizens-Times article. It's worth reading. I might go to that hearing. Thanks for bringing it to our attention...

I can see such a large a number of solar panels on a flat field, but to lose all of those trees and endangered species. Many animals would lose their homes. Of course there is the ruined view from Mt Mitchell, but it's deeper than that. I love solar energy, don't get me wrong, but pillaging the earth for it on such a large scale in such a precious area, for profit, doesn't seem right to me.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:11 PM
 
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"I love solar energy, don't get me wrong, but pillaging the earth for it on such a large scale in such a precious area, for profit, doesn't seem right to me."

Amen to that. Solar energy makes sense in certain parts of the country, like the Southwest and states like Florida. In Florida, there is plenty of sun and flat land. We had a solar hot water heater in one house we lived in and the interesting thing was, we had more hot water from it during the winter/spring months, when there was less rain. And I mean the water was scalding, that's how hot it was. Summer was another story, though, with the rainy/cloudy season. Sunshine has to be consistent in order for solar to make sense.

I don't know the area yet, but does WNC get enough year round sunshine for solar energy to be viable? Are there other sources of renewable or alternative energy that would make more sense in WNC?

To me, the trees are just too important.

Just pray WNC never becomes attractive for fracking, though.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Boone, NC
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Quote:
I don't know the area yet, but does WNC get enough year round sunshine for solar energy to be viable? Are there other sources of renewable or alternative energy that would make more sense in WNC?
Solar panels are best built in large, open fields where consistent sunlight can be received throughout the day. In the mountains, the panels are more likely to be shaded. Solar panels are also very sensitive, a mountain ice storm will wreak major havoc, especially since there's likely to be several in one winter.

Wind makes the most sense for the region, but that still creates a problem because they're the ultimate ruiners of mountain views and there's still not a lot of flat land for larger farms.

Obviously it's good to encourage small-scale renewable energy. Roof-top panels, individual turbines for farms and ranches, etc. But we may be stuck having our large-scale green energy wired in unless we want the local ecosystem to pay a big price.
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Old 01-03-2013, 04:06 PM
 
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"Wind makes the most sense for the region, but that still creates a problem because they're the ultimate ruiners of mountain views and there's still not a lot of flat land for larger farms."

Sigh. I wondered if wind would make more sense than solar in WNC, but it looks as if there would be the same problems with clear cutting, etc. You do have a good point about the ice storms, too. I don't suppose there are any geothermal resources in WNC? Or hydroelectric? Seems like your small-scale solution is the best one for the area.

I recall reading somewhere that Yellowstone National Park could provide enough geothermal to power a fairly large portion of the US. Geothermal has been extremely successful in Iceland. Don't get me wrong, it would pain me deeply to see Yellowstone transition from national park to national energy resource, but sometimes I wonder if that wouldn't be perferable to what we have now, not to mention the idiotic way alternative is currently being proposed, like the solar farm that is the subject of this thread. And the ethanol debacle that did nothing but raise food prices and enrich the "green" energy shysters.
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Old 01-03-2013, 04:18 PM
 
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I think this is due to regulations requiring power companies to get X % of their power from solar panels, maybe X% from something else. etc. Power is a regulated agency and you have to do what the powers that be require.

But I don't see why the power company can't find some alternate means to clear cutting forests to make said solar farms and I agree there has to be a better place than the finicky mountains to put a solar farm. I wonder why they can't put panels on power poles throughout the state. or put it in a location with maximum potential to return said % of power. My guess it is so much acreage in order to get the required % in.

Makes no sense to me. but I am not an engineer. Sad. But I am not a fan of windmills either.
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Old 01-04-2013, 03:46 AM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
252 posts, read 408,609 times
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Geesh. Now this, too~

"The Western North Carolina Alliance is urging action against a proposed 472 acre logging project below Devil's Courthouse in the headwaters of the French Broad River. The area is adjacent to the popular Art Loeb Trail and in the view-shed of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, according to the nonprofit environmental advocacy organization. Here's the message via the group's email newsletter..."

WNC Alliance urges action against Devil's Courthouse logging project | Mountain Xpress | Asheville, NC

We live in some sad times.
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Old 01-04-2013, 08:46 AM
 
Location: The 12th State
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I remember when I was a kid there use to be one solo wind mill on top of a mountain directly across downtown Boone.

Moving Over over that article mention logging in Pisgah it reminded me hiking in the forest 25 years ago with my boy scout troop and getting lost because of a logging road.
I understand why you posted this info here due to clearing of land.

Now back to topic, I never phantom the idea that there would be solar farms in the mountains. I dont agree with clearing mountains for the farms that is almost as bad as strip mining.

In the foothills, I am ok with farmers leasing their land for these solar farms but I hope they get paid good money.

I am waiting on the day on one of existing solar farms be impacted by a weather event. Heavy snow, hail or tornado.

Last edited by SunnyKayak; 01-05-2013 at 09:22 PM..
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Old 01-05-2013, 08:06 PM
 
Location: Chapelboro
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Sunny, why do you say that? Are you also waiting for the nuclear power plants to be impacted by a tornado? That's my nightmare. I'd hate to lose the trees, but much rather that than a situation like in Japan. I do think solar panels make the most sense in flat eastern NC. Some of those counties east of Raleigh are very flat and very poor and it would be easy to set up solar there. Plenty of land and plenty of sun.
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Old 01-05-2013, 08:43 PM
 
Location: Boone, NC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MovingOver2 View Post
They're messing up Devil's Courthouse over my dead body, I love hiking there.
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