In a bizarre incident, Woodland, a small town in North Carolina, has rejected a plan for a new solar farm after residents claimed solar panels would suck up all the sun, cause cancer, and drive young people out of town.
— Ned (@nedmiller) December 14, 2015
At a town council meeting, citizens expressed distrust and fear of the solar panels before conducting a vote on whether a section of land north of town should be rezoned to allow Strata Solar Company to build a solar farm off US Highway 258. In a 3 to 1 vote, the Woodland town council made the most ridiculous decision ever made by a government – it not only rejected the proposal to rezone the land so Strata Solar Company could build a solar farm, it went a step further, voting for a complete moratorium on solar farms.
Woodland, NC bans solar farm out of fear it will steal sun's energy . . . No, seriously! https://t.co/VZfu196LMA
— Occupy Wall Street (@OccupyWallStNYC) December 14, 2015
Jane Mann, a retired Northampton science teacher, told the council that she is “concerned thatphotosynthesis, which depends upon sunlight, would not happen and would keep the plants from growing.” She also questioned the high number of cancer deaths in the area, saying no one could tell her that solar panels didn’t cause cancer.
“I want to know what’s going to happen. I want information. Enough is enough. I don’t see the profit for the town. People come with hidden agendas. Until we can find if anything is going to damage this community, we shouldn’t sign any paper,” she said.
Worried about how Science is taught in Woodland..does solar make the curtains fade too? https://t.co/VBvvSR5bOE
— Auto Forward SMS (@AutoForwardSMS) December 14, 2015
Bobby Mann, Jane’s husband, then proceeded to reinforce his wife’s point. The “solar farms would suck up all the energy from the sun and businesses would not come to Woodland.” “You’re killing your town. All the young people are going to move out,” he said.
Mary Hobbs, who has been living in Woodland for 50 years, said she has watched it slowly become a ghost town that has no job opportunities for young people. “My home is surrounded by solar farms and is no longer worth its value because of those facilities. The only people profiting are the landowners who sell their land, the solar companies, and the electric companies,” she added.
Woodland rejects solar farm https://t.co/4Pi0kMwCuh how do people not understand how the sun works?
— Ford Lartmore (@NickSeam) December 14, 2015
Representatives from Strata Solar attempted to explain that “there are no negative impacts,” “a solar farm is a wonderful use for a property like this,” “there are no toxic materials on site,” “this is a tried and true technology,” and “the solar panels don’t draw additional sunlight.” One of them even went on to illustrate how the free energy from the sun would drastically reduce all of their power bills, but the residents were simply not convinced.