Saturday, October 16, 2021

Play

Community college students in California are encouraged to examine their options; plus a Boeing 737 Max test pilot was indicted Thursday by a federal grand jury on charges of deceiving safety regulators.

Play

Environmentalists have high hopes for President Biden at an upcoming climate summit, a bipartisan panel cautions against court packing, and a Trump ally is held in contempt of Congress for ignoring a subpoena.

Play

A rebuttal is leveled over a broad-brush rural-schools story; Black residents in Alabama's Uniontown worry a promised wastewater fix may fizzle; cattle ranchers rally for fairness; and the worms are running in Banner Elk, North Carolina.

Report: NC Farmland, Solar Industry Can Work in Tandem

Play

Monday, April 10, 2017   

RALEIGH, N.C. – North Carolina has almost 5 million acres of farmland, but a new crop of solar installations popping up around the state has some concerned that renewable energy could make some of that land unavailable.

Yet that's not the case according to a new study released by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture. It says solar installations currently occupy about .2 percent of the state's available farmland – or 1,200 acres.

With the state already ranking second in the country in terms of installed solar, Robin Aldina, manager of energy research with the NC Sustainable Energy Association, which commissioned the study, says solar isn't harmful competition for farmland.

"While that number can fluctuate as more development occurs – we see more building – we see we're not really at a point that we need to worry about the amount of land being used by solar installations in the state right now," he states.

Currently, utility-scale solar installations add 2.3 gigawatts of capacity to the state's electricity grid, enough to power 256,000 homes.

North Carolina ranks only behind California in terms of installed solar, but ahead of sunnier states such as Texas and Florida.

Many farmers are choosing to lease some of their land to utility solar companies, which generates a better return per acre, according to Aldina.

"Farmers are able to subsidize some of their crop land, their agricultural land, by developing a solar installation” he explains. “So they're getting paid to lease some of their land for solar, and that allows them to keep operating a farm that otherwise might be in economic trouble."

Aldina says farmers typically receive $400 to $1,000 per acre annually for leasing land to solar developers. Most crops provide about $300 per acre on an annual basis.





get more stories like this via email

As of 2021, medical aid in dying is an option for terminally ill adults in 10 states and Washington, D.C. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

ALBANY, N.Y. -- A new survey shows most New Yorkers approve of medical aid-in-dying legislation, and advocates for end-of-life autonomy said it is …


Social Issues

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohioans across religious traditions have come together as one voice this week to speak out against capital punishment. Dozens of …

Social Issues

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Community college students in California are being encouraged to take a closer look at their education plans, to see if …


There are an estimated 42,000 farms in Arkansas, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

SPRINGDALE, Ark. -- New efforts are underway to help small-scale farms in Arkansas expand their business. The Food Conservancy, a northwest Arkansas …

Social Issues

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A high percentage of rejected voter registrations in three of Ohio's biggest counties is raising some red flags. According to the …

Virginia's statewide election is Tues., Nov. 2, and polls are open from 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. (Adobe stock)

Social Issues

CORRECTION: The last day to request absentee ballots in Virginia is Fri., Oct. 22. An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Oct…

Social Issues

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- A special court panel is hosting public hearings this month, asking Minnesotans what new political maps should look like, and …

Social Issues

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Texas has some of the weakest gun laws in America, and gun-control advocates say the permissive attitude may be why a student …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021