University plan for solar farm

A solar farm planning bid is being finalised by the University of Cambridge, for submission in the autumn.

If approved, the farm will be built on a 36.7 hectare site owned by the university near the Lords Bridge Radio telescope.

The plan is part of the University’s drive to reduce its carbon footprint. It has a Science Based Target to reduce energy-related carbon emissions to absolute zero by 2048, with the aim of becoming zero carbon by 2038.

The proposed solar farm would generate around 22,875,000 kWh per year. This could potentially reduce the University’s carbon emissions by as much as 5,847 tonnesCO2 per year, a 19% drop on current emissions.

The final design will depend on issues such as archaeology, site visibility, the existing landscape, proximity to homes, and biodiversity and wildlife habitats. An Environmental Impact Assessment screening request has already been submitted.

The aim is to submit planning applications in autumn 2021, in the hope that permission will be received by early 2022.

Construction work is not expected to begin until at least the second half of 2022.

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