Solar Project Proving Unpopular in New York

Solar Project Proving Unpopular in New York

July 6, 2021

Governor Andrew Cuomo and the State of New York’s latest foray into solar energy is already running into predictable problems. Copake, New York is a town of roughly 3,500 people located about one hour south of Albany near the state’s border with Massachusetts. It is also where an out-of-state renewable energy company is proposing to construct a 500-acre solar farm.

On Monday, News-10 ABC reported that more than 4,000 residents have signed a petition opposing the farm: petition trying to block the construction of a proposed 500-acre solar farm in Copake has over 4,200 signatures as of Monday afternoon.

The petition is organized by Sensible Solar for Rural New York, a group that says it fully supports other renewable energy projects. They say the proposed project is simply too large and would cause damage to the surrounding environment and property values.

This latest development is further proof of how green energy advocates diminish or outright ignore the problems with siting solar and wind energy farms. These projects are commonly opposed by area residents who don’t want to see their natural lands and property values destroyed. As a result, even if the projects can eventually be sited, it will take years to get it done. Last month, this blog highlighted the wise words of Robert Bryce on these challenges:

Despite the raging rural backlash against Big Wind and Big Solar, numerous studies have been published by academics at elite schools like Princeton, University of California and Stanford that assume building massive amounts of renewable capacity and transmission can be done quickly, and for a mere few trillion dollars. None of the studies mention rural opposition to renewables or the difficulties of building transmission. For instance, the “Net-Zero America” study published last year by Princeton said the U.S. would have to double or triple its high-voltage transmission capacity in just three decades. That will not happen.

The punchline is obvious: It’s far easier to stop infrastructure projects than it is to build them. Activists who believe we can simply swap out the energy from Keystone XL with power from “clean” renewables are in for a rude awakening. That wake-up call may not happen tomorrow or next week. But eventually, physics, math and sanity will prevail.

The radical environmentalists are overselling the ease and popularity of solar and wind so they can fast track their real agenda of taking fossil fuels out of the mix. Unfortunately, it is the American people who will pay the price for this duplicity, and coping with the consequences of less energy and higher energy prices.