A state law requiring a third of California’s power to be generated from renewable sources by 2020 has generated concern for the California Farm Bureauin regards to a recent solar development project on Valley farmland.

According to Fresnobee.com, “the California Farm Bureau has won approval to pursue its legal fight against solar development on Valley farmland. A Fresno County Superior Court judge ruled last week that the California Farm Bureau Federation can sue Fresno County for permitting a 90-acre solar plant on agricultural land near Interstate 5.”

“Our state’s farmers and ranchers support renewable energy, but we’d like to see energy production facilities placed on marginal or less-productive farmland so we can preserve the best soils for growing food,” farm bureau spokeswoman Megan Alpers said.

According to the article, the Huron-based Westlands Solar Farms project is planned for “prime” farmland, considered the best for agriculture.

However, “County officials said the Westlands site is appropriate for energy development due to a lack of sufficient water for farming and being near an energy-transmission facility. The Westlands project would generate 18 megawatts of energy, which would be sold to PG&E to power as many as 18,000 homes.”

Judge Donald Black set a hearing for the case for Oct. 19.

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This article posted July 8, 2012.