A new solar project in Delaware County is stirring up controversy among some residents

In November 2021, Delaware County announced two solar projects coming soon: the first one in Gaston and the second in Albany near the Muncie Dragway.

The county states that solar is coming to Delaware County because of “an abundance of solar power, access to the transmission grid and a regional demand for power in the area."

“When I saw the map of the proposed layout of this, I immediately started crying and wanted to puke because I couldn't fathom waking up everyday and seeing solar panels surrounding my house,” said Brittany Mauck, who lives on a farm in Delaware County.

In a group of people opposing the idea, they created the “Delaware County solar crisis” Facebook page. The solar panels raised concerns about properties near the panels.

“I don't think anyone is going to want to buy a property that is surrounded on three or four sides by panels," Tim Niccum, a property owner, said.

Other issues are raised by taking farmland.

Brian Glass, an agriculture supplier, said that the farmland in Delaware County is the best soil that is available in the area.

The goal of the page and their movement is to push the county commissioners to redraft the county's solar farm ordinance to solve the impact it could have on them.

“Let's get a group together and fashion a plan for how we can implement solar energy, wind energy in a way that doesn't destroy thousands of acres, and doesn't disrupt the quality of life for hundreds of families,” said Niccum.

The most concerns are for young farmers just getting into the industry.

“The younger guys coming up in operations that aren't participating in this will be at a tremendous disadvantage” said John Christy, a farmer in Delaware County.

NewsLink Indiana reached out to the Delaware county commissioners office for comment on these residents' concerns, but they did not answer.

Contact Terra Konieczny with comments at tbkonieczny@bsu.edu.

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