Sheep Grazing Under Solar Panels on this New Haven Vermont Farm

With the proliferation of solar energy generation throughout Vermont, interest in on-farm solar generation has grown. For many communities, this has raised concerns about loss of valuable farm land and impacts to the visual landscape.

Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Regional Commission worked with the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets and the Center's Pasture Program to come up with recommendations for how to balance the needs of community and farm-scale energy needs with a shared commitment to protecting agricultural lands.

The team met with farmers and planners to come up with a plan to guide land use planners, farmers, and agricultural service providers in their planning and decision-making. That guide is now available so that "local planners can protect primary agricultural soils (often referred to as "prime ag") and the working landscape as a matter of town policy by acknowledging and promoting on-farm solar and active agricultural use on the same land."

Pollinator-Friendly Solar Resources

Land under and around solar arrays can be planted with pollinator-friendly vegetation: a benefit to agriculture, clean energy, bees and birds.  Learn more here


Interested in knowing more about the Center's work or seeking additional information? Contact Extension via the short form on this page and one of our colleagues will help get you the resources you need.

Woodcut of a farm with people gathering produce and cows grazing

Project Team