Pursuing Win-Win Opportunities
The Badger Hollow Solar farm project was recently approved and will include up to 1.2 million solar panels on 2,200 acres. There was some opposition to the project and the use of prime agricultural land for solar production. This case is typical of the dilemmas faced by the solar industry and the Great Plains Institute is working to address these issues in ways that support solar development and agricultural protection goals. This white paper discusses how best practices are being developed for solar development and agricultural communities.
Brian Ross, AICP, LEED GA
Great Plains Institute
- Program director at the Great Plains Institute, manages renewable energy technical assistance, assisted dozens of local governments across multiple states on zoning, programs, from Colorado to Illinois
- 25 years of direct experience in local and regional land use planning, managed dozens of comprehensive plans and zoning updates for cities across the Midwest
- Co-author of the American Planning Association’s Planning for Solar Energy PAS Report
- Authored Local Government Solar Energy Toolkits for four states (MN, IL, WI, IA), including model solar ordinances tailored to each state’s statutory enabling language
- SolSmart National Criteria Advisory Committee, developing the best practice criteria for this national solar-ready certification program for local governments
- Project leader for a national Solar Energy Innovation Network team, working with the National Renewable Energy Lab
- Conducts national trainings and webinars on solar planning and zoning; multiple trainings at APA’s National Planning Conference, multiple State APA conferences, Solar Power International, Smart Growth Network, National SolSmart webinar trainings, Sustainable States Network
- M.A. degree in urban and regional planning, University of Iowa
- Can be contacted at [email protected] or 612-767-7296
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