Belchertown stands to gain $6M from proposed solar farms as critics sound alarm over clear-cutting

There is controversy about clear-cutting many acres of trees to make them happen, but three proposed solar farms could net the town nearly $6 million over a 20-year period, data provided by the selectmen’s office shows. The projects are expected to generate a total of 18 megawatts, should the Planning Board approve site plans for them and other permitting requirements. Three solar farms already online — a 5.4-megawatt project off Route 181, a 1.5-megawatt facility on Ware Road and a 1.25-megawatt operation on Springfield Street — will bring revenue totaling $1.8 million over a 20-year period, Town Administrator Gary Brougham said in an interview last week.

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