The developers of the Burrundulla Mini Sustainable Energy Park, ITP Renewables, have defended their choice of location for the proposed solar farm on the outskirts of Mudgee.
A spokesperson for ITP Renewables said that proximity to infrastructure is vital in selecting a suitable site, with the proposed Burrundulla project designed to have minimised visual impact from the adjacent roads, neighbouring properties and dwellings.
"Developers are drawn to sites where high-quality solar resources are available and that are in proximity to the electricity distribution grid to enable connection," the spokesperson said.
The chosen location is as far from town as can be economically connected, it is approximately 6km from the centre of town and has few neighboursA spokesperson for ITP Renewables
"Town-scale developments tend to be sited on the fringe of towns as they require connection to low-voltage electricity distribution network infrastructure, which are the lines, poles and wires that deliver electricity to consumers within town.
"The chosen location is as far from town as can be economically connected. It is approximately 6km from the centre of town and has few neighbours.
"After consultation with the neighbours and others who may be affected by the proposed Burrundulla Mini Sustainable Energy Park, we moved the solar panels and security fencing to be 100m from the highway and 350m from the nearest neighbouring dwelling.
"To further appease those who might be offended by the farm over 600 native trees and shrubs will be planted around the perimeter of Lot 6 which, besides assisting in carbon sequestration, provide a haven for birds and bees and will in time hide the panels from view."
Furthermore, regarding its position on "prime agricultural land", they said this use won't have a negative effect on the ground.
"Whether it is prime agricultural land or not is debatable but regardless there will be no loss of agricultural production under the solar panels," the spokesperson said.
"And overseas trials have shown that production could be increased due to shading in summer and protection from frost in winter."