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Published On: Tue, Mar 5th, 2019

California: San Bernardino County blocks huge solar panel farm

San Bernardino County killed the construction of a mega solar farm Thursday with 4-1 vote by the County’s Board of Supervisors.

“California’s largest county has banned the construction of large solar and wind farms on more than 1 million acres of private land, bending to the will of residents who say they don’t want renewable energy projects industrializing their rural desert communities northeast of Los Angeles,” the LA Times reports.

photo/ annca

The ban is in contrast to state lawmakers’ mandate, who passed a law requiring utility companies to produce 60% of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2030 and 100% from “climate-friendly” sources by 2045.

Those measures cannot be enacted without the cooperation of local governments, the populations of which rarely support big solar and wind farms in  their communities.

The article summarizes: “The policy approved by the supervisors prohibits utility-oriented renewable energy projects — defined as projects that would mostly serve out-of-town utility customers, rather than local power needs — within the boundaries of Community Plans that have been adopted by more than a dozen unincorporated towns. Construction of utility-oriented solar and wind farms would also be banned in so-called Rural Living zones. Solar projects that are already going through the permitting process would still be allowed to proceed.”

“They’re temporary construction jobs, but that’s what we make our livelihood off of. And to put language in there that strictly prohibits these projects from going forward would be irresponsible,” said Justin Lanford, president of the San Bernardino County chapter of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

Supervisor Robert Lovingood said residents “spoke clearly about what they want to see.”

“If we don’t adopt this, that’s just spitting in their face,” he said, adding that the county has already designated several smaller areas where renewable energy projects could be approved.

Curt Hagman was the only supervisor to vote against the restrictions. He said he doesn’t want to preclude new renewable energy technologies that might have less of an impact on rural areas, while still bringing economic benefits to the county.

About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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