Following the typical stance of the Conservative Party, Environmental Secretary Liz Truss has stated that she believes that large-scale solar farms are a "blight on the landscape" and believes the land could be better used for growing food.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, she described the plans as ugly and said that she is "very concerned that a lot of our land is being taken up with solar farms. We've got 250 and we've got 10,000 football pitches worth of new solar farms in the pipeline."
Truss went onto say:
"Food and farming is our number one manufacturing industry, the whole food chain represents £100 billion in our economy, and it is a real problem if we are using productive agricultural land for solar farms. . . I'm not against them per se - they're fine on commercial roofs and school roofs - but it's a big problem if we are using land that can be used to grow crops, fruit and vegetables."
She does make some sort of point, especially considering most of the land that is not suitable for growing food tends to be found in the northern parts of the country where solar farms might not be as suitable. Then again the comments about solar farms being "ugly" and a "blight on the landscape" personally strike me as somewhat hypocritical given how her party is very supportive of fracking.
At this point in time there is a grant scheme that will grand landowners £100 for every acre of land fitted with solar panels, a scheme that is worth over £2 million a year. Truss confirmed that there are plans to cut this subsidy at some time in the future.
We are making a lot of headway into the development of transparent solar panels maybe the near future will see using that land for generating power and growing food without the need for a compromise? [Daily Mail via BBC News]
Featured image: Alton Solar Farm via BBC News