Community Issues - Solar Power

Solar Power

In the battle against global warming, solar power provides one of the best tools, since it essentially directly captures the heat of the sun and turns it into electricity. However, it requires large solar arrays, whether on roofs or in open fields. Around Kingsville, one sees more and more roof-mounted systems. We now have one medium-sized ground-mounted array installed by SGC Power at the end of Pfeffers Rd adjacent to I-95, installed on land that George Majchrzak recently purchased. According to information at the required zoning hearing, it produces 2.1 MegaWatts and takes up about 6 acres. SGC Power had previously installed a system at Glen Meadows Retirement community on Glen Arm Rd that also takes up about 6 acres.

On August 29, 2016, it was announced by County Executive Kevin Kamenetz that the county will install 4 systems around the County with a total of 21 MegaWatts of capacity. One will be on "unused portions" of Mt Vista Park. It is unclear whether County officials consulted with the community before announcing these plans.

See also Baltimore Sun article.

The following plans for Mt. Vista Park have been shared with the community (click on image for larger image).

This seems to be just a map with some initial thoughts. It shows the possible areas for fields, and several areas for panels, noting that there would be a 50' setback from the fields.

This shows two specific areas of panels of 4.8 acres and 3.5 acres for a total of 2.4 MegaWatts.

Note: For those following this issue, Bill 68-16 was introduced to place a "temporary" moratorium (until 30 Apr 2017) on installation of "solar farms" in RC zones, but not applicable to those installed as a part of a government sponsored project for government use. It was passed by unanimous vote on October 17, with an amendment added to require that such projects on public land have sufficient landscaping, and the end of the moratorium was changed to Feb 18, 2017. At the same time, resolution 101-16 to ask the Planning Board to study needed legislation was withdrawn. The County Exec vetoed the bill, citing the problems that it would create for the contract that they had already signed (without citizen input). The Democratic-controlled Council did not attempt to override the veto. A new Bill 95-16 was introduced to specify restrictions, but, once again, it would have no impact on any government-sponored installation. It was withdrawn and reintroduced as Bill 9-17 which was again withdrawn. Bill 13-17 then was introduced, but failed on a party-line vote.

Return to Issues Pages

Updated 3 Mar 2017