Shiawassee County community delays decision on 200-acre solar farm

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SHIAWASSEE COUNTY (WJRT) (7/10/2019) - Several dozen families are speaking out against a new solar farm.

A Florida developer wants to cover this land in Shiawassee County's Caledonia Township with solar panels to generate renewable power for Consumers Energy.

Caledonia Township leaders had planned to move forward with the 200-acre project Wednesday night.

There was a small hiccup postponing that decision. Township leaders accidentally put the wrong date on a flyer about Wednesday's meeting. So, the township attorney suggested they move the date to Aug. 7 to allow everyone the chance to voice their opinions.

Despite that move it didn't stop several others from speaking out about this solar farm sitting behind their backyards.

Renergetica wants to build 72,000 solar panels on more than 200 acres in Shiawassee County. The Florida-based solar company is looking to invest more than $30 million near Lyons Road.

A representative from the company was there at the meeting. He says this is one of 32 solar projects in development in all of Michigan.

This project happens to be near a Consumers Energy station. Consumers Energy is looking to generate 5 gigawatts of solar energy in the next 35 years.

A few people at the meeting say they're not against solar energy. They just don't want to look at the panels.

Many of them brought up more needs to be done to block the view, even suggesting the company on planting evergreen trees.

An attorney with the company says the submitted proposal goes above the requirements needed. He suggested neighbors could plant their own trees to block the view.