Commissioners put moratorium on renewable energy projects

At this morning’s public meeting, County Commissions agreed to turn away any new applications for “commercial-scale renewable energy facilities in unincorporated Delta County” for the next six months.

Planning staff and the Planning Commission has been tasked with developing standards for solar farms and other renewable energy projects in the county’s Land Use Code. Planning director, Carl Holm, told commissioners that he had already begun writing some of the language and that he’d hoped for a swift resolution.

Since the approval of a large-scale solar farm on Garnet Mesa, three new applications have been filed with the county by contiguous landowners nearby. These will be processed according to the current Land Use Code but others will have to wait six months or until issues are addressed and incorporated into the code, whichever comes first.

Commissioner Wendell Koontz originally proposed a 12-month moratorium but Commissioners Suppes and Lane believed that too long and posed an unnecessary barrier to continued development of the code.