How can we help?

To help answer any questions you may have about our proposals, please see our frequently asked questions below. Alternatively, you can contact us directly.

About Solar

Is the UK sunny enough for solar to be effective?

Solar can already produce as much as 30% of the UK’s electricity at different points throughout the year, and in 2020, solar provided more than 4% of the UK’s total energy supply.

One of the advantages of solar energy is its versatility across all regions of the UK. Solar panels do not require direct sunlight to function and can generate power consistently throughout the year, even on cloudier days. Moreover, the reliability of solar power is bolstered by the ability to accurately predict sunlight hours for each day, facilitating precise forecasts of solar energy generation.

Onsite battery storage will allow us to store and export energy during peak times, even after the sun has gone down.

Can’t we put solar panels on rooftops instead?

As one of the most cost-effective forms of clean and renewable energy, solar power is poised to experience a fivefold surge in capacity by 2050, as outlined in the Government’s Energy Security Strategy (2022). To keep on track with the UK’s ambition to be net zero by 2050, the Government is aiming for a combined 70 gigawatts (GW) of ground-mounted and rooftop solar capacity by 20351.

However, the 70GW ambition will not be achieved through rooftop solar alone, as few rooftops are ideal for solar power generation. For a rooftop solar panel to generate electricity, it must be south facing (or at least south-east or south-west), it must have at least 20 square metres of clear roof space and the roof cannot be too shallow or steep.

1 https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/powering-up-britain/powering-up-britain-energy-security-plan#delivery-timelines

Does the use of arable land for solar farms reduce food security?

The Independent National Food Strategy Review, which looks at the entire food chain from field to fork, concluded that solar farms do not in any way pose a risk to the UK’s food security2.

According to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), climate change could reduce the UK’s stock of high-grade agricultural land by nearly three-quarters by 2050. A report by DEFRA confirmed that the biggest threat to the UK’s food security is Climate Change3. Solar farms generate near zero-carbon electricity and thus help to tackle the issue of climate change.

Solar farms provide valuable income for farmers, they can still be used for grazing, and can support UK farmers to continue food production on other parts of their land. Therefore, solar farms have a key role to play in helping to improve the UK’s food security by addressing climate change and safeguarding the UK’s stock of high-grade agricultural land.

2https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/united-kingdom-food-security-report-2021/united-kingdom-food-securityreport-2021-theme-2-uk-food-supply-sources#united-kingdom-food-security-report-2021-theme2-indicator-2-1-1

3https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/1077015/United_Kingdom_Food_Security_Report_2021_19may2022.pdf

Are solar panels recyclable?

Solar panels are made of a frame (typically aluminium), glass, crystalline silicon solar cells, and copper wiring, all of which can be extracted, separated, and recycled or reused.

Proposals for Peartree Hill

What is a DCO and how does the process work?

As Peartree Hill will generate more than 50MW of power, it is classed as a Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project (NSIP) and will proceed through the Development Consent Order (DCO) planning process.

The DCO process provides a dedicated framework specifically designed to address the complexities associated with large, complex energy projects (as well as other project types).

Applications for DCOs are examined independently by the Planning Inspectorate. Following an Examination of the project, the Planning Inspectorate will make a recommendation to the Secretary of State for the Department of Energy Security and Net Zero, who will decide on the outcome of the application.

As the host authority, East Riding of Yorkshire Council will be a statutory consultee for the application and will play an important role in shaping aspects of the project. JBM Solar is committed to working closely with the Council, along with local Parish Councils and statutory consultees such as the Environment Agency. As part of this commitment, we will exhibit a proactive approach to taking onboard feedback and incorporating comments.

The DCO process is a comprehensive and structured planning procedure, ensuring that all aspects of the development are meticulously scrutinised. This process involves several stages:

Further information on the DCO process can be found on the Planning Inspectorate’s website: https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/.

Updates about Peartree Hill Solar Farm will be posted on the Planning Inspectorate’s website: https://infrastructure.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/projects/yorkshire-and-the-humber/peartree-hill-solar-farm/?ipcsection=overview

What is the timeframe for construction?

The typical build time for a solar project of this scale is 18 months.

What will the local impacts of construction be?

As part of the Development Consent Order (DCO) process, JBM Solar will investigate any potential local impacts as a result of the construction and will propose measures to mitigate them if necessary. A Construction Environmental Management Plan (CEMP) will be developed as part of the DCO application to outline how construction activities will be managed throughout the construction process. We will also prepare a Construction Traffic Management Plan (CTMP).

How long would Peartree Hill Solar Farm be operational?

The typical lifetime of a solar farm is 40 years. After which the solar farm will be decommissioned, and the land returned to its former use.

Will Peartree Hill Solar Farm be publicly accessible?

The main panel areas will have a security fence around to protect the panels and associated facilities.

However, as part of the proposals for Peartree Hill, JBM Solar is seeking to deliver a wide range of ecological enhancements and community assets. To ensure that the area can be enjoyed by the local community, where appropriate we expect to incorporate new footpaths around parts of the site which are currently linked to / near existing public rights of way.

Since we are at an early stage of the proposals, we have not yet identified specific routes for new footpaths. However, we welcome feedback from the community on where they would like to see paths or other types of public access routes as part of the proposals.

Will Peartree Solar Farm create noise once it is built?

Any noise produced by Peartree Hill would be by the inverters, batteries or substations, which we typically place in the centre of the site and away from residential properties. The predicted noise impact of a typical solar farm is considered to be low to negligible, and non-intrusive.

We will undertake an assessment of the potential noise effects arising from both the construction and operation of Peartree Hill. Baseline noise survey information from existing background levels will be used to understand the existing noise climate within the surrounding area. Noise sensitive receptor locations will be identified and agreed with East Riding of Yorkshire Council as part of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Scoping.

Good design and high-quality infrastructure will serve to reduce noise from Peartree Hill at source. However, sound attenuation measures may be incorporated into the design of Peartree Hill to support noise levels to remain under acceptable limits, if required.

Is battery storage safe?

Battery storage, or battery energy storage systems (BESS), are devices that enable energy from renewables, like solar and wind, to be stored and then released when the power is needed most.

Battery storage technology has a key part to play in ensuring homes and businesses can be powered by green energy, even when the sun isn’t shining, or the wind has stopped blowing.

Battery storage technology has long lives, charging and discharging thousands of times, are safe and can store enough energy cost effectively to match demand.

Will the solar panels at Peartree Hill Solar Farm create glint and glare? 

As solar panels are designed to absorb sunlight, they do not have highly reflective surfaces. This stands to reason: the more light a panel absorbs, the more power it will generate. This is why the industry has developed high-tech anti-reflective coatings, and ultra-transparent glass to improve panel efficiency. 

However, a Solar Photovoltaic Glint and Glare Study will be undertaken which will consider potential impacts on roads, Public Rights of Way, rail lines, residential dwellings as well as aviation. Mitigation measures will be proposed where the assessment identifies potential impacts, such as hedgerow infilling and planting to obstruct views of potentially reflecting panels. 

There are lots of solar projects being proposed in and around this area, why do we need them all?

There is widespread recognition that the UK, along with the rest of the world, is in a climate emergency. The Government has outlined that solar has an important part to play in diversifying the UK’s energy mix, while reducing emissions and keeping energy bills low.

JBM Solar is aware that there are several consented and proposed solar schemes in close proximity to the Peartree Hill Solar Farm. However, with Government aiming for 70 gigawatts of ground and rooftop capacity together by 2035 to keep on track with net zero goals, there is a need to consider the feasibility of solar delivery on land in all areas of the country, even if there are already some consented and operational solar schemes in the area.

As part of the project’s Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) that will be submitted with the Development Consent Order (DCO) application, we will need to assess the potential cumulative effects of the project in combination with other development schemes in the area.

How are the proposals for the onshore cable of the Dogger Bank South Windfarm being considered?

A section of the Dogger Bank South (DBS) onshore cable crosses through the area proposed for solar development. JBM Solar is now part of RWE, who are developing the DBS project and discussions are ongoing to ensure both projects can avoid impacts and identify potential synergies.

Community

How can local people get involved with the application?

JBM Solar will be undertaking multiple phases of consultation with the local community, local authority, relevant parish councils and regulatory bodies, such as the Environment Agency, on the proposals for Peartree Hill Solar Farm.

The first phase of consultation will provide an opportunity to introduce JBM Solar and its consultant team as well as outline the proposals to the community. All feedback from this stage of consultation will be collated and reviewed and used to further refine the proposals before a more detailed plan is presented in the second phase of consultation in 2024.

The first phase of consultation took place from 9 October, lasting four weeks, until 11:59pm on 6 November 2023. More information about the consultation programme can be found on the Have Your Say page.

We will present updated plans at a further consultation in 2024.

Will JBM Solar listen to the views of the local community?

Public participation is a crucial part of the DCO process. Developers must conduct public consultations and give due consideration to the feedback received.

The feedback we receive at this stage, coupled with the ongoing environmental and technical surveys, will play a crucial role in shaping the design of Peartree Hill that we will present at a further ‘statutory’ consultation in 2024.

How does JBM Solar aim to contribute to the local community?

We are committed to delivering a solar farm that contributes to local and national energy goals, while also providing tangible benefits to the local community, both within the land areas and through a community benefit fund.

Our vision for Peartree Hill includes a wide range of ecological mitigation and enhancements. This includes new wildflower meadows, grassland areas and habitat creation, encouraging this area to become a haven for wildlife and local biodiversity. Through this, and new permissive paths and enhancement of existing Public Rights of Way, Peartree Hill can become a space for all to enjoy, with increased opportunity for access, transforming it into a shared communal space of wildlife, leisure and education.

Beyond the solar farm, JBM Solar wants to give back to the local community and is committed to providing a community benefits fund that can be used to support local causes and initiatives. This community benefit fund would take the form of annual payments spread across the 40-year lifespan of the project’s operation. We will work with local community representatives to understand how this fund can be best used to meet the area’s needs and aspirations.

For more information about Community Benefits, visit the Benefits page.

Would JBM Solar hire locally?

JBM Solar will endeavour to find local firms and suppliers for construction activity on-site, as well as civil engineering works for the solar farm. Other opportunities for local suppliers relate to contractors for aggregates, landscaping supplies, haulage as well as plant hire. Construction staff are also likely to use local accommodation and shops/restaurants.

Once operational, the solar farm does not require any permanent staff, however, there will be a need for ongoing monitoring, cleaning, landscape maintenance and general maintenance over the course of the year.

This briefing document covers a number of commonly asked questions about solar energy in an easy-to-understand, and interesting way.
This briefing document explains the role of solar farms in supporting the UK’s food supply.

Common Myths About Solar Power

Contact us

To contact the project team you can:

info@peartreehillsolar.co.uk
01482 695 004
Freepost PEARTREEHILL SOLAR FARM
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