New Hampshire: 245 acres of forest threatened by NextEra’s Chariot Solar project

  CLwpBS  Biodiversity

The Chariot Solar Project is a 50 megawatt project proposed by NextEra in Hinsdale, New Hampshire. NextEra, a huge energy corporation, proposes nine separate arrays spanning 265,000 acres of fields and forests divided by Lipscomb Brook which flows into the Connecticut River. This project will deforest 245 acres of lands harming biodiversity, forest continuity and wildlife corridors

The ground mounted industrial arrays, batteries, and transformed are squeezed in around wetlands, vernal pools and streams with minimal buffer zones. This risks contaminating waterways. The area along Lipscomb Brook is classified by the state as “Highest Ranked Habitat” in New Hampshire. The bulk of the project would be located on land classified as “Highest Ranked Habitat in the Biological Region” or “Associated Supporting Landscape.”

In June, 2022, Dr. Stubblefield, a biologist, submitted comments to the New Hampshire Site Evaluation Board. New Hampshire does not have zoning for local control over this project, unlike Massachusetts. This appears to be a project that will sell electricity to Massachusetts consumers. Hinsdale NH residents won’t benefit from the electricity. They will lose forested lands, climate resiliency, face a threat to their water supply and be left with a denuded site in 20 years when the lease is up.

NextEra is a massive corporate conglomerate with $58 billion in annual revenues. About 50% of the electricity it sells comes from fossil fuels. In Maine, it meddled in a citizen led ballot initiative over the CMP transmission corridor. In Florida it conspired against a ballot initiative to undermine rooftop solar using a “dark money” campaign. NextEra owns the decrepit Turkey Point nuclear power station in Florida and is trying to build 2 more nuclear facilities.

NextEra is greenwashing the Chariot Solar project to line its pockets. This huge corporation does not care about our forests, the climate or our communities. This project should be rejected.

Read Dr. Stubblefield’s comments here.

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