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Lovell rejects proposed solar farm at town meeting


Lovell residents voted 202 to 30 to pass an ordinance killing off a proposed 180-acre solar farm at a town meeting on Saturday morning. The farm, proposed by Walden Renewables, has drawn anger from locals for its potential impact on the surrounding mountain views, as well as threatening the town’s rural landscape according to locals. “I built here because of the beautiful mountain views,” said Tom McLaughlin, a member of Our Eden Association, a group set up to fight the solar farm. “Now you’re going to see 100,000 solar panels in front of the mountains, it’s going to decrease the value of my property.” McLaughlin and other farm opponents hailed the vote’s outcome. “I’m very pleased and proud of the level people who have come forward for this,” McLaughlin said. Solar farm proponents say some residents’ concerns should be outweighed by the environmental benefits that solar panels would bring big city trouble,” said Lovell resident John McCann, who backed the solar farm. “It’s an all hands, all lands perspective. We need to be aware of our impact on the environment in different ways.” 200 jobs and pay $8.8 million in local taxes. The company did not respond to comment on the vote. The Lovell order passed in the meeting would allow for the construction of a 10-acre solar farm, as opposed to the proposed 180-acre farm.

Lovell residents voted 202 to 30 to pass an ordinance killing off a proposed 180-acre solar farm at a town meeting on Saturday morning.

The farm, proposed by Walden Renewables, has drawn anger from locals for its potential impact on the surrounding mountain views, as well as threatening the town’s rural landscape according to locals.

“I built here because of the beautiful mountain views,” said Tom McLaughlin, a member of “Our Eden Association,” a group set up to fight the solar farm. “Now you’re going to see 100,000 solar panels in front of the mountains, it’s going to decrease the value of my property.”

McLaughlin and other farm opponents hailed the vote’s outcome.

“I’m very pleased and proud of the level people who showed up for this,” McLaughlin said.

Proponents of the solar farm say some residents’ concerns should be outweighed by the environmental benefits that solar panels would bring.

“It’s not a small-town, big-city problem,” said Lovell resident John McCann, who backed the solar farm. “It’s an all hands, all lands perspective. We have to be aware of our impact on the environment in different ways.

Walden Renewables says the farm would bring power to 9,500 Maine homes at a fraction of the CMP rate, create more than 200 jobs and pay $8.8 million in local taxes. The company did not respond to comment on the vote.

The ordinance Lovell passed at the meeting would allow for the construction of a 10-acre solar farm, as opposed to the proposed 180-acre farm.

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