The Forestry Forum is sponsored in part by:

iDRY Vacuum Kilns


Forestry Forum
Sponsored by:


TimberKing Sawmills



Toll Free 1-800-582-0470

LogRite Tools



Norwood Industries Inc.




Your source for Portable Sawmills, Edgers, Resaws, Sharpeners, Setters, Bandsaw Blades and Sawmill Parts

EZ Boardwalk Sawmills. More Saw For Less Money!

STIHLDealers.com sponsored by Northeast STIHL


Woodland Sawmills

Peterson Swingmills

 KASCO SharpTech WoodMaxx Blades

Turbosawmill

Sawmill Exchange

Michigan Firewood, your BRUTE FORCE Authorized Dealer

Baker Products

ECHO-Bearcat

iDRY Wood Lumber Vacuum Drying for everyon

Nyle Kiln Dry Systems

Chainsawr, The Worlds Largest Inventory of Chainsaw Parts

Smith Sawmill Service



Author Topic: Solar Farms ??  (Read 6168 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Walnut Beast

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4247
  • Location: NE
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Solar Farms ??
« on: September 04, 2021, 07:58:25 AM »
What do you know ? Anybody have their place in it ? Just might put my place into it. Pretty lucrative. Iím thinking of my two options of leasing or outright selling. 350 million dollar project that other farmers are doing out my way thatís looking like a go 

Offline mike_belben

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 13398
  • Location: Middle TN
  • Pulp Friction
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2021, 12:10:03 PM »
i know that the location density of utility scale solar farms in america more closely matches the central banking locations than it does the nations solar profile.  have a few guesses as to why that is.  

havent really heard of any individuals first hand details on the making of money at it with respect to all the little rooftops.. seems not paying for your own electric is the best that end pays.  smith and wesson was converting to solar farming and parking structures as i left, but they were using several inches of copper diameter at 15,800 volts so in their case it was probably about reducing a massive massive expense. 

my first employer passed on long, long ago.  he owned a parcel he leased to the town for a landfill from before my birth.  it was capped around the time i worked for him and is a solar lease now that hes gone but i no longer have any contacts to ask how the $$ work.  im not sure how many other leasing options there are for a grassy trash hill so he may have pidgeon holed himself on that one. but i also know he made a mint taking in garbage. 
Revelation 13:11-18

Offline Southside

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 11506
  • Age: 50
  • Location: Wilsons (Dinwiddie County), VA
  • Gender: Male
  • Have a plan to saw every log you meet.
    • Share Post
    • White Oak Meadows
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2021, 03:54:47 PM »
If you sell, where do you go? Land prices have gone beyond what they can return, they may still go up, but for sure they are going to come back down.

Case in point my place sold for 3X what I paid, 5 years before I bought it. 
Franklin buncher and skidder
JD Processor
Woodmizer LT Super 70 and LT35 sawmill, KD250 kiln, BMS 250 sharpener and setter
Riehl Edger
Woodmaster 725 and 4000 planner and moulder
Enough cows to ensure there is no spare time.
White Oak Meadows

Offline sprucebunny

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4176
  • Age: 68
  • Location: Northern NH
  • Gender: Female
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2021, 05:30:10 PM »
Do you have a main transmission line on or abutting your property ? Something like 115 Kv minimum.

I do. I've been approached by 3 solar companies. Had a contract with one of them for 2 years while they did thier research. They dropped me because the utility company wanted twice what they expected to pay for the interconnet. ( They planned on $10 million. ) Also cause my land was too wet which I don't really understand cause it's sloped and they didn't understand either.
MS193, MS192 and an 026  Weeding and Thinning. Gilbert Champion sawmill

Offline Autocar

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 3035
  • Location: Twenty five miles southwest of Lima Ohio
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2021, 06:29:52 PM »
Just my two cents but it is a joke and ruins good farm ground. Just like the wind mills take the goverment out of the picture and they would fall on there face !

Offline Walnut Beast

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4247
  • Location: NE
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2021, 12:15:47 AM »
Just my two cents but it is a joke and ruins good farm ground. Just like the wind mills take the goverment out of the picture and they would fall on there face !
How is it a joke ? What ruins the farm ground? If itís leased for four years and you donít want to keep participating in the program they come in and disassemble everything, get it out and leave the land the way it was. If you wonder why farmers are participating in the programs is when your talking four figure per acre and the figures keep going up for extended years of participation. You canít make that farming. Itís real and itís happening and itís no joke.

Offline Walnut Beast

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4247
  • Location: NE
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2021, 12:25:09 AM »
What I find funny is people that are in some sub divisions that are all about alternative power and no drift spray watch from farmers are the same people that are putting signs up everywhere against it when itís being built next to them 😂

Offline Walnut Beast

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4247
  • Location: NE
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2021, 12:48:57 AM »
Do you have a main transmission line on or abutting your property ? Something like 115 Kv minimum.

I do. I've been approached by 3 solar companies. Had a contract with one of them for 2 years while they did thier research. They dropped me because the utility company wanted twice what they expected to pay for the interconnet. ( They planned on $10 million. ) Also cause my land was too wet which I don't really understand cause it's sloped and they didn't understand either.
This company is already in the works with the power company on all that. That is interesting  about the land being wet what the problems are. When I gave a tour in my Polaris General of my place to female representative that came out I pointed the farm out next door and she said there was some wet areas there. I will check into that. I do know they mow under the panels in other states from what I heard from guys that had contracts doing the mowing. 

Offline peakbagger

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 250
  • Location: Northern NH
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #8 on: September 07, 2021, 06:38:47 AM »
The standard caveat is the devil is in the details. It quite odd that they offer you a 4 year "out" in the lease. I would suggest that you read the fine print with respect to the "out" as the developer is going to lose their shirt if someone uses that "out" clause. Unless your state has some incredible incentives, most solar farms are set up for 20 year financing. Panels last longer than that but accountants usually depreciate the assets down to zero in 20 years. The power inverters have about a 10 year life and so the economic models usually include one replacement and assume the second replacement is not needed as the field is economically worthless by that point. Another thing to remember is the developers knocking on the door are rarely in it for the long term, they can make a lot of promises but the standard business model is develop the site, get it built and then sell the project to a financial firm. The next owner is not going to remember promises so if its not in an enforceable contract the promises will go away.

The back end of these lease deals are usually a problem. The equipment and installation is set up for 20 year life so commercially in 20 years anyone wanting to continue the project will have to remove and dispose of the equipment before they install new. That means its cheaper to go elsewhere. This is one of the "devils", There currently is no recycling chain set up for solar panels. There could be but no one knows if its going to cost money to get rid of them or if it will be break even. The electronics are probably going to cost something to get rid of. The copper wire will probably be worth something but if they direct bury it, removal may cost more than its worth. There are several racking systems out there which are usually thin gauge galvanized metal. Its probably break even to get rid of. The actual posts in the ground can be spiral augers, or driven posts. There are lot of them and they will need to be removed, my guess is that is a cost to remove plus disposal. My guess is the reference to wet ground may be that wet ground needs a more expensive foundation system.

If the owner of the solar farm needs to deal with these end of life costs, they have to carry a conservative cost to remove the system. This decreases their profit so they are going to try to figure out a way of someone else taking that risk. In theory if they retain the risk, that commitment is only as good as their contract. Ideally that removal cost should be bonded by a third party bond as there is risk that one of the future owners could go bankrupt leaving the owner with potential cost to remove the equipment. Many developers try to donate the project to the landowner or some other entity at end of life, a landowner out to make a buck now may not care about what happens in 20 years but the potential liability will weigh down the future value of the land.

Another aspect is that even though solar panels should have a 20 year life (many early solar panels have far exceeded 20 year life), some have not. The panels used on farms are commodities bought on low bid from predominantly 3rd world suppliers. On occasion a supplier cut things to close and the panels start to deteriorate. In theory the developer may have some warranties but its unlikely anyone ever collects. A solar field owner with bad panels may elect to walk away. The other risk out there is fire, these fields are not fireproof or even fire resistant, if there is grass fire under the panels, its likely there will be lot of damage. Sure the owner of the field may have insurance but they may elect to keep the check and abandon the project. These fields are almost always owned in some convenient legal entity like a LLC that can be shut down without a lot of liability to the owner of the field.

Some states are concerned about loss of farm land, the solar industry is desperately trying to come up with agricultural uses or the land under the panels. I think Mass pays a higher incentive if the developer can prove that there is still some ag use.

Ultimately go in with a good lawyer familiar with long term leases preferably solar. No matter how nice and "green" the developers may be, someone is in it to maximize revenue and reduce risk. 




Offline Walnut Beast

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4247
  • Location: NE
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #9 on: September 07, 2021, 07:51:17 AM »
Actually itís 5 year minimum lease. No concern to me what panels or equipment they are using. Iím just leasing the land. This company has big projects completed and running in various other states. If this company wasnít the real deal a friend and who I have a hunting lease with thatís putting all of his farm ground in probably 1,000 acres. He wouldnít be doing it. And he is a commercial attorney in another state. 

Offline Wudman

  • Forester
  • *
  • Posts: 863
  • Age: 55
  • Location: Keysville, VA
  • Gender: Male
  • Eat, drink, and be merry before you go on quota!
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #10 on: September 07, 2021, 09:23:47 AM »
Just my two cents but it is a joke and ruins good farm ground. Just like the wind mills take the goverment out of the picture and they would fall on there face !
How is it a joke ? What ruins the farm ground? If itís leased for four years and you donít want to keep participating in the program they come in and disassemble everything, get it out and leave the land the way it was. If you wonder why farmers are participating in the programs is when your talking four figure per acre and the figures keep going up for extended years of participation. You canít make that farming. Itís real and itís happening and itís no joke.
We have a handful of these small projects scattered across Virginia.  Northern North Carolina has a bunch of them.  Virginia was in an extremely wet period during construction of a number of these facilities.  Erosion was a major problem.  One project in particular has been cited numerous times by DEQ.  Every time it rained, VDOT would send the front end loader down to remove a foot of sand from the state highway.  That bunch fought to stabilize ground for over a year.  
My concern comes around these "industrial scale" projects.  My community is looking at projects in the 3000 - 6000 acre range.  One company is proposing to develop a 21,000 acre site in order to situate 6,000 acres of panels.  This is to be located in the river hills adjacent to the Roanoke River.  I'm not a fan of grubbing stumps across 6000 acres to sit a bunch of Chinese mirrors.  You will fight erosion issues for decades.  A lot of these lands optioned for these industrial scale projects will bring $7,000 to $8,000 per acre plus timber value.  That is a significant value to the landowner.  Of course, these costs will be transferred to the consumer.  Rural America is "subsidizing" Urban America's desire for "green energy".  I believe the support of "green energy" will wane when we start seeing 6,000 acre clearcuts.  At this point in time, the system still requires 100% backup for any solar project.  Those power plants have to be maintained as the sun doesn't always shine.  This will remain true until industrial scale batteries become a reality.  
Back to your initial observation......if you are considering enrolling your property, I would look closely at that contract.  I would certainly have a provision where the developer had to post a bond or escrow account for future site clean-up.  At some point, the equipment is obsolete.  You don't want to be stuck holding the bag to clean up a hazardous waste dump when the contract holder files bankruptcy and walks away.  With the up-front costs to the developer, I find it hard to believe that they would provide an "out" 4 years into a project.  Be careful.  


Wudman
ďYou may tear down statues and burn buildings but you canít kill the spirit of patriots and when theyíve had enough this madness will end.Ē
Charlie Daniels
July 4, 2020 (2 days before his death)

Offline Crusarius

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4413
  • Age: 45
  • Location: Canadice, New York
  • Gender: Male
  • Lost in....
    • Share Post
    • RockModified.com
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2021, 09:37:21 AM »
Solar panels are going to be just like windfarms. How many windfarms do you guys see that are just taking up valuable land and no longer producing anything. All be cause the cost to replace the blades is to high.

as much as I like to be environmentally friendly. Some of these green initiatives everyone is pushing are far from being "green".

When the sites become obsolete I guarantee they will be taking up thousands of acres not producing and will never be removed.

Offline Walnut Beast

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4247
  • Location: NE
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2021, 11:18:15 AM »
Yes indeed Wudman. That thought has crossed my mind on company bankruptcy or company being bought out by another company and so on. There is definitely many questions. The planning commission did pass the permit but there are probably many obstacles for them yet. Iím in no hurry and donít know if I really want to do it 🤷‍♂️

Offline Walnut Beast

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4247
  • Location: NE
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #13 on: September 07, 2021, 11:24:06 AM »
That reminds me I was talking to a guy up in Minnesota and he told me that a farmer he knew up there was getting like 20k a month for a big wind generator and he had 35 of them on his place

Offline mike_belben

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 13398
  • Location: Middle TN
  • Pulp Friction
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #14 on: September 07, 2021, 11:59:55 AM »
im skeptical.  
Revelation 13:11-18

Offline wisconsitom

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 1055
  • Age: 66
  • Location: Appleton, WI
  • Gender: Male
  • Deep in the larch
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #15 on: September 07, 2021, 12:24:23 PM »
Thought I was the only one bothered by the rise of "solar farms".  I too support efforts towards better energy sources but I can't support these blighting projects.  Quite frankly ridiculous when you start to tally the collateral damage.  As Crus and others mention, it's the land use.

I support as much rooftop solar as there are appropriate roofs to hold....but solar farms are an abomination.

Not saying it couldn't pencil out for an individual, in the economic sense.  I speak only of the absurd environmental tradeoff.
I'm a life-long learner.  That's why I made sure to start out real dumb!

Offline Crusarius

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 4413
  • Age: 45
  • Location: Canadice, New York
  • Gender: Male
  • Lost in....
    • Share Post
    • RockModified.com
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #16 on: September 07, 2021, 01:19:13 PM »
If the gov't would give me money to put it on my roof I would gladly help out. But taking up as much space as these things are is insane. They are installing one as we speak in my tiny little town. Funny thing is Byrne Dairy has been trying to come into this town for years and keep getting shutdown. But the solar farm went right through. Doubt anyone in this town will see anything from it other than the sun glare.

BTW byrne dairy is a gas station / convenient store and ice cream Shoppe. Plus they have the best donuts :)

Offline Autocar

  • Senior Member x2
  • *****
  • Posts: 3035
  • Location: Twenty five miles southwest of Lima Ohio
  • Gender: Male
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #17 on: September 07, 2021, 02:30:32 PM »
If and when they would come back to reclaim the ground from a solar farm, digging the foundations out will put so much clay soil around the ground it will not grow what it initially did. I agree with Crusarius if you want solar put it on your own roof and not destroy good farm ground with a million of them.

Offline snobdds

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 296
  • Age: 41
  • Location: WY
  • Gender: Male
  • I'm new!
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #18 on: September 07, 2021, 03:00:36 PM »
That reminds me I was talking to a guy up in Minnesota and he told me that a farmer he knew up there was getting like 20k a month for a big wind generator and he had 35 of them on his place
I don't believe that.  My neighbor has wind turbines and he see about 3k per year for each one.  

Offline snobdds

  • Senior Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 296
  • Age: 41
  • Location: WY
  • Gender: Male
  • I'm new!
    • Share Post
Re: Solar Farms ??
« Reply #19 on: September 07, 2021, 04:02:57 PM »
I do see the benefit of solar as a renewals source of energy.  On an economic front, point of use solar makes a whole lot more sense than trying to augment the grid via huge farms.  Solar in my view works best at charging a battery bank as the energy can be used later on when there is no sunlight.  Solar farms just add to the grid and is subject to a variety of pricing schemes for peak and non peak power.  It's almost all grid supplied for peak power because the sun doesn't shine at night. So it's an expensive supply of power if you have no way of storing it, and that cost is always passed on to the consumer. 

Commercial power should come from a more stable source of power and variable loads (housing) can come from a home solar array where battery storage is on a scale where batteries can be charged and discharged efficiently.  Batteries would be a problem in anything commercial as the size and cooling would far outpace the benefit of free energy. 

The other problem with solar panels is the toxic elements used to make them.  I think there is a way to recycle the glass and metal bits, but the toxic parts still end up as hazardous waste.  If you have a panel break, then there's a chance for the toxins to leach onto the surrounding land. 

Nothing is free and nothing is perfect.  I think we're still finding out where it fits best into the overall energy portfolio.  





Share via delicious Share via digg Share via facebook Share via linkedin Share via pinterest Share via reddit Share via stumble Share via tumblr Share via twitter

xx
Shagbark Farms and a top saw

Started by dgdrls on Sawmills and Milling

5 Replies
815 Views
Last post May 21, 2020, 07:28:52 PM
by moodnacreek
xx
Wind Farms?

Started by mr T on General Board

80 Replies
11931 Views
Last post March 30, 2010, 09:15:54 PM
by routestep
xx
New Venture at Whittaker Farms

Started by Corley5 on FOOD! FOOD! FOOD!

23 Replies
4049 Views
Last post July 25, 2011, 05:23:39 PM
by Mooseherder
moved
MOVED: Look for sawlogs in farms

Started by Mooseherder on Forestry and Logging

0 Replies
621 Views
Last post February 18, 2013, 03:23:30 PM
by Mooseherder
 


Powered by EzPortal