Plans for Wales' largest publicly-owned solar farm

time:2023-06-02 16:38:27source:BBC News (British Broadcasting Corporation) author:Press center 1

A council has submitted plans to develop Wales' largest publicly-owned solar farm.

Cwm Ifor solar farm, to be built near Penyrheol, Caerphilly county, is expected to cost between £12m and £16m.

It is predicted to generate enough electricity to power 6,000 homes and have an operational lifespan of 35 years.

The 20 megawatt farm was approved in theory by Caerphilly council cabinet in October 2022.

But no decision has been made on whether the council will develop the solar farm itself or sell the project on, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

This is the first time the council has made moves to invest in the energy sector.

It hopes the solar farm will support decarbonisation of the local electricity system, as well as provide an opportunity to generate an additional income.

The land is privately-owned, so a lease agreement would be made between the owner and the council.

Construction is expected to begin in April 2024, if the now-submitted plans are approved next month.

The project has been classified as a "development of national significance", meaning the Welsh government will make the final decision on the application.

Labour councillor Jamie Pritchard, the council's deputy leader and climate change cabinet member, said: "In 2019, the council declared a climate emergency and has committed to being carbon neutral by 2030.

"The solar farm is a very exciting development and just one of a number of innovative initiatives planned by the council to reduce carbon emissions."

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