TOWN OF DEERFIELD, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – The project will have an estimated footprint of 900 acres including solar arrays, a seven-mile transmission line, and a substation interconnection to the National Grid circuit, which will change the look of the roads, and the grassland. The Manager of Public and Government Affairs for Boralex Darren Suarez says that the company intends to develop the area in a manner that will allow for some continuation of agricultural production, and hay is something that they think the project can accommodate.

The way that our row spacing works for our solar panels we use a newer technology that allows for greater space between the panel rows and that actually allows for a tractor small tractors or larger tractors to drive the biggest combine down but that’s the change but with most equipment actually accommodate it,” said Darren Suarez.

However, Fusco explains that this development of the solar farm will not allow for the same quality of farming that they are used to, and there are various species of endangered and threatened grassland birds that will be impacted.

“They cannot be put on a reservation…” said Daniel Fusco, Town of Deerfield resident.

 However, Suarez says the project is in the early stages…and there is still time to adjust and change the plans.

“We can avoid areas of prime habitat location we can also look at we can also look at how those species may interact with our panels,” said Suarez.

Fusco is just one of many residents who will have solar panels right up to their property line, creating a fear that the value of their land will go down. Farmer and land owner Jeremy Teel was approached a few years ago and asked to give up his land and he told the company….

“Absolutely not, we need to preserve farmland once it’s gone it’s never coming back and there’s less and less of it available,” said Teel.