Strange things are happening in the tiny town of Woodland, North Carolina. The community, which boasts a population of about 1,000 people, voted ‘no’ to an important a solar farm project, fearing the solar panels would use too much energy, drive away young residents, and release dangerous toxins.
Jane Mann, a retired science teacher living in the community, expressed the strange concern that solar panels would kill plants by using up all the sunlight in the area. She said she has noticed brown and dead plants near other solar panels. Jane also fears that the panels might cause cancer, stating that no one has proof that solar panels don’t cause cancer. “People come with hidden agendas, “ said Jane. “Until we can find if anything is going to damage this community, we shouldn’t sign any paper.”
“You’re killing your town,” said Jane’s husband Bobby. “All the young people are going to move out.” According to the Roanoke-Chowan News Herald, Mann also fears the panels would suck up all the sun’s energy. Longtime resident Mary Hobbs complained that nearby solar farms have decreased the value of her property. She also commented that Woodland is becoming a ‘ghost town’ with no job opportunities. The only people who benefit from solar farms, she said, are people who sell their land, the electrical companies, and the solar companies.
The town of Woodland is an attractive location for solar panels because it has an electrical substation to which the power generated by the panels can be hooked up. The town council has already approved three solar farms, but changed its tune when residents started to complain.
Strata, rhe solar company in charge of the proejct, tried to convince the council and its audience that no damage would come to Woodland. “There are no toxic materials on site. This is a tried and true technology,” said company representative Brent Niemann. His reassurances came after a concerned citizen named Jean Barnes started a petition to stop the project.
“The panels don’t draw additional sunlight,” Niemann added. Beth Trahos, another representative, explained, “There are no negative impacts. A solar farm is a wonderful use for a property like this.” Despite Strata’s reassurances, the council voted 3-1 to reject the project and put a moratorium on future solar farms.
Editor’s note: Holy crap! A science teacher said that??