Residents have reacted with alarm to plans for a massive solar farm at Sutton, which will cover 370 hectares of farmland.
Former deputy chief minister Simon Corbell, who led Canberra's ambitious move to fund solar and wind projects around Australia, is an advisor to the project.
At 120 megawatts, the Springdale Solar Farm is five times bigger than the Royalla farm outside Tuggeranong, which was Australia's largest solar farm in 2014 at 20 megawatts.
It also dwarfs three other ACT government-funded farms, Mugga Lane at 13 megawatts, Williamsdale at 11 megawatts and Mount Majura at 2.3 megawatts
The farm is to be developed by Sydney-based Renew Estate, with construction slated to begin in April next year and the farm is expected to be operational by January 2019.
Renew Estate's largest shareholder is the German-based Wircon Group, with Canberra's Beast Solutions' - whose owners include Toby Roxburgh and for which Mr Corbell works - another shareholder in the company.
Neighbours of the new proposal at Sutton are frustrated by how close the panels will be to their front doors.
Plans for the new Springdale Solar Farm show the panels will be about 350 metres - or about two football fields - away from the homes on their property.
The $150 million solar farm would be built by Sydney-based Renew Estate less than four kilometres north-west of the ACT, providing enough energy for 35,000 homes.
Sutton resident Peter Gillett is concerned the proposed farm will ruin his views and hit the value of his property.
"It just seems a really ridiculous location for it when there are other areas in NSW that are suited for these types of developments," Mr Gillett said.
Renew Estate has said it would offer immediate neighbours a share of the revenue raised with the projects.
Mr Corbell said the current amount proposed was $200,000 for each neighbour - or $10,000 a year - over a 20-year period.
"So it gives those residents some additional revenue," Mr Corbell said. "That is really a very innovative thing. We have seen it with wind farm projects."
But Sutton resident Mr Gillett has described this amount as "frankly insulting".
"We flatly rejected it, it was insignificant," Mr Gillett said.
He also criticised what he sees as a lack of community consultation and said his neighbours will also have panels surrounding their driveway.
Mr Gillett said Sutton residents move out there for the rural living and the solar farm's neighbours would be impacted by the farm.
"People who are looking presently to buy out here are looking for that lifestyle," Mr Gillett said.
"This area in the past has been used for farming. Presently, its main use has been rural residential."
He believes property prices will drop as a result of the impact the farm would have on views from his property.
Mr Corbell said Renew Estate would be looking to address those concerns with a number of measures, including screening which would involve planting trees and other options.
Mr Corbell said the company understood the residents' concerns but the proposed farm was permitted under planning laws.
"We're committed to working through those issues constructively," he said.
"In earlier stages of consultation we adjusted the perimeter for the project to move it away from the dwellings."
Renew Estate would provide a community fund of $100,000 over 20 years for the community within a 20 kilometre radius of the farm.
Details for how the fund would work were still being worked through, but it would be managed by a committee of local representatives, councillors and representatives from the solar farm.
Renew Estate would also give the community the option to invest in the farm, allowing them to receive returns from energy sales.
Mr Corbell said the company would provide local jobs.
An environmental impact assessment prepared for the company said the project should proceed, with the overall positive impact of the project outweighing several mitigating steps which would need to take place.
Those steps include salvaging Aboriginal artefact sites, with Aboriginal scarred trees to be protected by fencing.
There would need to be environmental monitoring in place for several threatened species which call the 3.7-square kilometre site home, including the golden sun moth and superb parrot.
The assessment also noted the project would change the type of livestock farmed around the site.
"This change is not considered to be a significant impact in the context of agricultural activity across the wider Yass Valley," the assessment read.
Renew Estate is holding a public information session in Sutton on Wednesday, August 8, but opponents of the farm, the Sutton Solar Action Group, will be looking to host a community meeting before then.
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