Community solar groups partner with American Farmland Trust on sustainable development initiative

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American Farmland Trust, Edelen Renewables, and Arcadia have announced a partnership called Partnership. Farmers Empowering Communities Address climate change through the development of solar energy while preserving America’s farmlands and ranches to grow food, fuel, and fiber. The partnership will provide new revenue-generating opportunities for more farmers and bring renewable energy to previously unreachable communities.

Farmers Powering Communities advances 25- to 50-acre community solar projects to bring green energy to those without rooftop solar, connect with local solar farms, and bring resilience to more Americans . The partnership will connect with local energy providers who will identify the best sites for new solar farms, install the equipment and provide electricity to residents at a lower than market average cost. Together, the partners plan to create 500 MW of community solar capacity over five years.

AFT’s smart solar principles Guided development sites, within built environments (rooftops, carports, irrigation canals), degraded and polluted land (brownfields, landfills, reclaimed mining sites), and finally, alternatives to solar power. give priority to marginal farmland. First-class farmland. If solar power development takes place on good agricultural land, the installation should be agricultural or dual-use. This will allow agriculture and ranching to continue in tandem with solar energy production. As the industry builds new solar power, it’s important not to harm agricultural systems that help combat climate change by sequestering carbon.

“Farmers are on the front lines of climate change, experiencing extreme weather that impacts crops, livestock and livelihoods,” said AFT President and CEO John Piotti. “We also know that farms can be part of the solution to the climate crisis. Farmlands can absorb carbon from the atmosphere when cultivated in climate-friendly ways, such as reducing cover crops and tillage. Soils can be rebuilt using the right tools, we need to dramatically increase the production of solar energy while sustaining farms and ranches, and that’s what this partnership is all about.Solar in the right place, the right way. Deploying is what we call smart solar.”

Development begins in 2023 in many states with active community solar programs including ME, MA, RI, NY, NJ, DE, MD, DC, VA, IL, MN, CO, NM, OR will be The partnership will also facilitate community solar access nationwide through state and federal policy advocacy.

Notice from American Farmland Trust

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