"Baker Point Solar has provided us the opportunity to generate affordable energy, and tax dollars for the schools our grandkids attend." Glen and Rebecca Eaves, Frederick, Md.
Ground-mounted solar is the sustainable harvesting of sunshine, using safe, modern technology to capture and convert the sun’s rays into electricity.
Rather than placing panels on rooftops, OneEnergy’s projects are sited at ground level and produces enough clean, renewable energy to power multiple homes and businesses–even entire towns.
Solar arrays are safe in every respect, don’t use your water, and leave behind healthy, rested land with no permanent footprint.
As a landowner, solar is one of the easiest crops you could have. You are not responsible for costs associated with the solar array during the life of the lease, and it preserves your land for generations to come.
As a conscientious developer of solar projects, OneEnergy believes that trust is the cornerstone of our relationship with our landowner partners. Which, in part, means we work with you from the earliest stage of the project to ensure your questions are answered.
Solar + Farming: Naturally Compatible
For farmers, solar is a thoughtful way to diversify farm revenue and add a new crop to your land’s portfolio. That’s why we work with landowners during the design of our projects to ensure farming can continue around the array.
Unlike farming corn or hay, or grazing cattle, solar does not deplete the soil or require irrigation. You’ll be harvesting a renewable resource that promises a stable and long-term source of revenue for your family—one that doesn’t fluctuate with global commodity markets or vary based upon weather.
As a landowner, solar is one of the easiest crops you can have. It offers the opportunity to keep your land intact, your soil healthy, and to preserve your land for generations to come.
Cambridge Solar is going to give us a steady and reliable source of income that will help us continue to operate as a farm. Mark Adams, Cambridge, Md.
Solar: Good for Pollinators + Land
The acres of pollinator habitat we plant as part of the project benefit soil and water quality by improving ground filtration, reducing runoff, and providing habitat for native bees, birds, and butterflies. Depending upon the project’s location, sometimes we also incorporate vegetative screening which can add to the view.
In fact, the Argonne National Laboratory says “By increasing the ability of pollinators to pollinate adjacent agricultural fields, solar-sited pollinator habitat may boost farmer’s crop yields and make solar farms a more welcome neighbor to agricultural farms..”
When a solar array has reached the end of its useful life, we follow a strict decommissioning plan to remove the panels and recycle all equipment possible, leaving behind well-rested soil that can immediately be returned to its previous use.
The area around solar panels can provide an ideal location for the plants that attract pollinators. Argonne National Laboratory
At OneEnergy, we respect the rich tradition of farming in our country and recognize that farmland is often part of a family’s proud heritage. We are committed to the responsible and successful stewardship of your family’s legacy. Solar offers the potential to keep your land intact, your soil healthy, and preserve your land for generations to come.
Commonly Asked Questions
How big are solar projects?
Our solar projects range in size from roughly 15 acres to hundreds of acres. A 2 MW solar projects can be built on about 20 acres and generate enough energy to power roughly 500 homes. A 100-acre site can power an entire town or more. All from a source that's about as renewable as it gets: sunshine.
Will it provide my home with electricity?
Not directly. Most of our solar projects generate energy that is fed directly to a nearby utility, which in turn delivers inexpensive, renewable energy to businesses and homes in your community.
Can I still farm other crops while there’s a solar project on my property?
Absolutely. Landowners from whom we lease participate in the design so they can continue farming around the solar panels. Solar acts like a cover crop that improves soil quality so the land can again be farmed at the project’s end.
Will I be able to see the solar project?
Solar projects have a naturally low profile. At their highest point, they are often lower than a stalk of corn. Our solar arrays are designed with neighboring communities and may include landscape buffers such as native hardwood, shade trees, shrubs, and pollinator friendly flowers and grasses.
Do solar projects make noise?
Solar projects produce a hum that it can only be heard standing inside the arrays--usually at the center of the project--and can't be heard at the fence line. Since solar projects aren’t active without sunlight, they don’t produce any noise at night.
What are the impacts?
Solar is a great neighbor. No emissions, smells, or harmful chemicals are used or produced, and there is no harm to water quality or soil. The deep-rooted pollinator habitats planted in our projects reduce runoff and soil erosion. The panels connect to existing electricity lines, and natural rain fall is generally sufficient for cleaning the panels, meaning no need for additional water use or lines.
Will a solar project cause glare?
No. Solar panels are designed to absorb the sun’s rays, not reflect them. Studies by the FAA have found that solar projects have 50% less glare than grass and bare soil—both of which are already on site.
Are solar projects safe?
Yes. Generating energy from the sun is incredibly safe, and our projects comply with the most stringent of safety codes. Because solar projects don't use fuel or produce emissions or radiation, they are considered one of the cleanest and safest forms of energy.
Does this mean less farmland?
No. Landowners from whom we lease (not purchase) participate in the design so they can continue farming around the solar panels. The leases protect farms from loss of land to spec homes and strip malls, while acting as a cover crop that improves soil quality until the land can be farmed again at the end of the lease.
What happens at the end of the lease?
The project will be removed with all materials recycled to the greatest extent possible. The ground will be reseeded and restored to its previous state—leaving the well-rested land available to be used immediately however the landowner wishes.
Can solar help save pollinators?
Yes! The site will be planted with pollinator-friendly native plants and flowers. Butterflies and bees are responsible for every 3rd bite of food we eat. Suitable habitat is critical to healthy pollinator populations and successful crops, and our wildflower meadows are beautiful to the eye.
How long does it take to build a solar project?
Not that long. From the time we sign the lease, until the time the project is producing energy from the sun, it's usually 18-36 months. The physical installation of the panels and equipment can take a few weeks to a couple of months, depending on the size or scale of the project.
Is Solar A Good Fit for Your Property?
Working with you, OneEnergy completes an initial review of the proposed site to ensure it has three key ingredients: dependable amounts of sunshine, relatively flat land free of trees or wetlands, and close proximity to electrical infrastructure. If the land is suitable, OneEnergy will often offer the property owner a lease.
The next phase (referred to as ‘due diligence’) usually takes 18-36 months. During this time we will conduct in-depth studies and secure necessary permits. OneEnergy’s team works offsite more than onsite during this time, so the landowner may continue to sow crops or use the land as you wish throughout this timeframe. OneEnergy is committed to minimal disturbance at all times.
When a solar project’s life is over, the components are removed and recycled, and the former array leaves behind well-rested soil that can immediately be returned to its previous use.
Give us a call or send an email–one of our development team members will review your property’s characteristics and you’ll know pretty quickly if a solar array is compatible with your land.
If you are a landowner and would like to inquire about leasing your land for solar, please click here.