North Kesteven councillor calling for stance by authority to limit large scale solar projects

A North Kesteven District Councillor is calling for the authority to take a stance on the growing number of large solar farm projects coming forward in Lincolnshire.
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With large scale solar projects currently in consultation such as Springwell on lands largely belonging to the Blankney Estate between Ashby de la Launde and Metheringham, Beacon Fen on land east of Ewerby, plus the Heckington Fen project and Fosse Green on land around Bassingham, Coun Peter Overton, from Wellingore, who represents Eagle, Witham St Hughs and Swinderby Ward has submitted a motion to tonight’s (Thursday) Full Council meeting of NKDC.

He calls for the council to support the stance on large solar industrial developments, taken by the County Council, seeking to limit large industrial solar developments on agricultural land, which have to be approved by the government as National Significant Infrastructure Projects.

The Lincolnshire Independent councillor proposes: “This council writes to the Minister of State for energy and net zero requesting a strategic approach across the country, where agricultural areas like North Kesteven do not become dumping grounds for excessive development.

Coun Peter Overton. (Photo: NKDC)Coun Peter Overton. (Photo: NKDC)
Coun Peter Overton. (Photo: NKDC)

“This council requests a sequential test be incorporated into planning decision-making, which enables solar developments on commercial roofs, car parks and other developed areas to be prioritised over open countryside.”

He adds that the council should agree to work with the County Council in developing an energy statement, which enables North Kesteven to reach its Net Zero target by 2030, “without damaging our rural heritage, including damage to agriculture and tourism on which we depend.”

The council has previously declared a ‘climate emergency’ and was involved in identifying areas suitable for renewable energy developments in the Central Lincolnshire strategic plan.