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Copake still waiting for complete solar proposal

Jul 27, 2023 12:51 pm

Diane Valden reports in The Columbia Paper that Hecate Energy submitted its third response to the New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting’s third notice that its application for the Shepherd’s Run Solar project in Copake was incomplete. Hecate Energy, a Chicago-based energy company, wants to build a 60 megawatt solar facility east of the Taconic Hills School District and north of Copake Lake in Craryville. The proposal would include 200,000 solar panels on about 228 acres of an 880-acre property. The proposal has much community opposition, with some lamenting lost property values. Copake Zoning Law would not allow the project, but the state is now bypassing some local regulations to get more renewable energy projects approved. Hecate filed its latest round of materials with the state on June 27, and 60 days from then the state must determine if their application is now complete. Copake Deputy Supervisor Richard Wolf said town officials recently met with state Sen. Michelle Hinchey about the solar proposal. Wolf said, “We discussed our concerns about the proposed size and location of Shepherd’s Run, and then toured the site with Senator Hinchey and her staff. Altogether, we met for more than an hour. When we finished, Senator Hinchey expressed her view that the location was all wrong, noting in particular her concern for the loss of prime farmland. I have forwarded to her information from Hecate’s most recent submission: more than 81% of the ‘to-be-disturbed’ land is designated as prime farmland.” Read more about this story in The Columbia Paper.

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