Dan Poulter Central Suffolk and North Ipswich MP supports Flowton residents in fight against solar park proposals
During a meeting with Flowton residents, Dr Poulter heard their concerns about the impact the park could have on the village.
Proposals include three separate 'large' solar parks and residents fear they would damage the natural environment, as well as lead to the loss of local amenity, loss of prime agricultural land and the possibility of surface water flooding.
Other concerns include the visual impact of the park and the lack of local infrastructure to support the construction.
Dr Poulter has now written to the Leader of Mid Suffolk District Council asking for the introduction of a strategic energy policy plan to support solar parks being sited in the right places and to help prevent inappropriate solar park applications from being proposed in the future.
Dr Poulter said: “We all recognise the importance of increasing Britain’s solar energy capacity in order to improve both our energy security and to reduce our carbon emissions. However, what is being proposed in and around Flowton is completely unacceptable.
“The cumulative impact of three large solar parks will completely overwhelm this small village and at the same time, it will also take hundreds of acres of prime agricultural land out of food production, increase surface water flooding at times of heavy rainfall, and damage biodiversity.
“The time has come for Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Council, as the local planning authority, to introduce sensible planning policies and guidance relating to suitable locations for solar parks with a strong presumption in favour of brownfield and former industrial sites.
“Unless this is done, sadly we will continue to see the potential threat of future large scale solar parks being sited in inappropriate locations here in Suffolk due to piecemeal and opportunist applications coming forward from developers.”
The proposals relate to land south of Tye Lane, Bramford and include the installation of a solar array, battery energy storage system and the construction of access roads.