On Wednesday, April 5 at 7pm the updated solar ordinance will be on the agenda at the joint public hearing between the Shenandoah County Board of Supervisors and the Shenandoah County Planning Commission.
Since March 2022, Shenandoah County has been working to update its energy ordinance to account for recent state legislative changes and community input from the Planning Commission’s Solar Ordinance Review Committee.
- Protecting clean water by avoiding developments near wetlands, springs or sinkholes, streams, floodplains or on steep slopes.
- Limiting soil disturbance to 50 acres per site and to only the area required for construction, operation and maintenance of facility.
- Avoiding historic, cultural and scenic resources by not allowing a facility within 300 feet of an identified resource.
- Returning the sites to preconstruction condition by requiring restoration to prior conditions at the end of the project by retaining existing topsoil on site, soil restoration and revegetation.
- Supporting continued agriculture or wildlife habitat by including wildlife corridors as identified and requiring a minimum 50% project area coverage by pollinator friendly plants.
- Considering lasting infrastructure impacts by communicating with neighboring landowners via required community meetings.
The county has compiled many resources for county residents to review and come prepared to share feedback with supervisors and planning commissioners on April 5.
We applaud the county for its persistence in putting forth this ordinance that protects Shenandoah County’s water and soil and the agriculture and tourism industries they support while allowing opportunities for energy development.