Solar Cells, Solar Energy Development | Would you like to build one of Norway’s largest solar parks in a popular hiking area: – got a chin slip

Solar Cells, Solar Energy Development |  Would you like to build one of Norway’s largest solar parks in a popular hiking area: – got a chin slip

– that Wants There will be regional conflicts in the future, that is guaranteed. There will be demanding discussions locally, and there will be conflict. But the country needs strength.

This was the message sent by Åslaug Haga this week. She is the leader of interest organization Fornybar Norge and has spoken at a large gathering of the energy industry.

From the same stage, the government made it clear that wind and solar energy should be developed at a tremendous pace.

Giant industrial park in the picnic area

The foundation stone for this development is now taking place in the municipality of Midt-Telemark, more precisely in Nordagutu.

It is not without reason that Bø Sommarland is only two miles away: the area is known for its good sunny conditions.

The new company Solutvikling, which is partly owned by the giant, wants to do there , to develop what will become one of Norway’s largest solar parks with solar panels installed on the ground. They will put it right next to the building.

In practice, this means that they want to cut down more forests, installing row after row of solar panels.

The facility is planned to be built in a popular hiking area, in a forest that contains, among other things, a light trail. The area extends around a nature nursery, sporting facilities, church and housing estate. Telemark Hospital also has a rehabilitation department in the immediate vicinity.

The forest at the edge of the settlement is about 270 acres. According to the landowner, the plan is anyway to cut down the forest as it is ready for harvest.

I got a drop on the chin

After the well in the area first heard about the plans in April, I gradually began to realize what this actually meant.

The company had previously contacted the mayor and asked how they would go about informing the municipality of the plans.

– Then I said that the wisest thing would be to tell those who live in Nordagoto first, those closest to them. I thought they’d be allowed to skip reading about it, but I hear it first hand, but I can see that it has caused some problems: If I find out about something, it takes a while before it’s taken up and discussed. Extremely.

For after three representatives from Fillet had been informed at the outset, and “almost dismantled when they saw the plans” as they put it, a separate working group was set up and public meetings arranged which expressed strong opposition to the plans.

Their first thought was to move the facility immediately away from the settlement, but after a few rounds of the think-box and input from the villagers, they suddenly realized that this wouldn’t be a fortunate outcome either, says company spokeswoman Inger Lise Ek Wegheim on the working group for Nettavisen.

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– We are a working group that was formed after a meeting we had with several people in the village. We demand that no solar power plant be ever built at Sundsmoen. In other words, stop, as you say.

The list of their arguments is long. They use professional reports that say, among other things, that so-called “gray areas” are desirable for placement. It is located around the famous disappearing picnic area. The area is likely to be fenced off. This is a children’s play area right next to the nature nursery. It’s about a rehabilitation center.

Disappointed and sorry

Bjarte Tørå is part of the Action group. He told Nettavisen that the sentiment developed violently.

The first reactions were a mixture of great surprise, a little bewilderment, and a little shock. They are thinking of building a power station next to a sports facility, a nursery school, our great hall, a parish hall and, not least, housing, which is the largest housing area in this part of the municipality, he said. .

He says that astonishment gradually turned into the idea that “these areas cannot be used”?

Now you have a question, “Is this really happening?” , and you also feel sad and hopeless. They want to take what we have from the areas around us. This is where we are. This is what an outdoor recreation and picnic area is all about, he says.

It brings almost no income

The residents have also gone a long way in convincing the municipality that this is not an idea to be implemented.

On Thursday, there was a public meeting in Nordagutu, where a number of parties indicated that they would oppose the development, but perhaps work should begin to identify other areas that might be more suitable to be able to produce electricity.

In addition to the fact that the residents of the area are highly passive, there is not much income that comes with having such a facility in the municipality.

– As I understand it, there is no income other than property tax. It’s probably around NOK 100-150,000, I didn’t figure that out, says the mayor to Netavisen, who thinks anyway that the people in the area are the most important thing here.

It could set the standard for the rest of the country

Part of the challenge with ground-mounted solar power is that very little of this type of power has been built in Norway to date, particularly a few in the immediate vicinity of buildings.

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At the same time, there’s a lot going on: NVE states that they’re aware of up to 50 different major solo projects being planned.

It didn’t make it any less complicated by the fact that the systems were outdated, but that probably According to the mold from the recently updated regulations for solar energy, giving the municipality more energy.

The area that can currently be built is defined as the so-called LNF area which has its own protection. But because the plant will be subject to licensing, it is not for the municipality to decide on its own. NVE is responsible, and in extreme cases, the government can bypass the municipality with the state plan.

– I called NVE to ask them, and then I was told that this was kind of a new business, and that some rules were on the way now. But they said that if there is a request for a license, the municipality will be an important party to hear, and the municipality’s response will be given great weight, but it is still the NVE that has the power and authority in this matter, says the mayor.

The fact that there is so little practice in this type of case means that the resolution in this case, which is close to housing, may become relevant for future applications.

– Decisions made at Nordagutu may not only be about us. The decisions here at Nordagutu could become an example that will also guide solar power plants planned near buildings in the future, Eek Vegheim believes.

– perhaps the experiences from developing wind turbines should be a clear warning to be careful, she rhetorically asks.

Tørå points out that they are already seeing signs of this.

– As of today, projects that are somewhat advanced in the process, as in Birkeland, are often indicated on how to do this. My concern is that when you have so few guidelines to follow, maybe you should be more careful when choosing the location of your solar power plant.

– If you put it very close to the buildings, as planned in Nordagutu, in the hiking area obviously by many, often: can it become the example that is indicated when other solar power plants are built outside? “You can do it in Nordagutu, so you should also be able to do it here,” Tørå tells Nettavisen.

– Few areas are most appropriate

The whole background to wanting to develop more solar energy has to do with the need for more electricity. The electricity crisis of the past two years, combined with a supposedly large increase in energy demand in the coming years, means that most people agree that more electricity generation needs to be built.

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Neighbors in Nordagutu also had a spinal reaction.

Trygve Raen at Solutvikling told Nettavisen that the plant at Nordagutu is expected to have a capacity of 18 MW (maximum capacity). The plant will produce approximately 18 gigawatt-hours of electricity annually, which is equivalent to the electricity consumption of about 1,000 homes.

The cost will be somewhere between NOK 110 and 130 million, based on NVE analytics.

– NVE analyzes indicate that today, land-mounted solar power plants are more profitable than offshore wind, but less profitable than onshore wind power. Unlike wind power, there are no subsidy schemes for ground-mounted solar power plants in Norway. So all ground-mounted solar plants would have to stand on “their” legs and be 100% commercially viable in order to be built, he says.

He believes that the area in Nordagutu meets all the criteria they are looking for:

– Important criteria for site selection are solar conditions, terrain profile and network capacity. The more modest the intervention, the more reversible the measure. Network capacity is an important factor affecting project profitability. It is also socially beneficial to use areas where there is free capacity to feed into the net. Considering biodiversity and cultural heritage are factors we emphasize when choosing a site. The location in Telemark meets all of these criteria very well and there are a few areas where, in our opinion, it is best suited.

He points out that “proper forest management” means the forest must be cut down now.

– And if, after the expiration of the concession, someone wishes to recreate the forest there, it will be quite possible.

According to Ryan, solar power should be less of a trigger for conflicts than wind power:

– Unlike wind power on the ground, solar power plants installed on the ground make little noise and have much less terrain. By placing a vegetable belt around the plant, it will not be visible from the outside. Ground-mounted solar plants can also be built with minimal intervention and can be removed relatively easily after the end of the concession period, he says.

It remains to be seen if there will be any of the plans. according to schedule The company has put forward, they should use the time until Christmas to work on both the license application and work on project details. They are hoping to make an investment decision around the new year. Work can start in February.

Hanisi Anenih

Hanisi Anenih

"Web specialist. Lifelong zombie maven. Coffee ninja. Hipster-friendly analyst."

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