Bord na Móna and ESB are proposing to develop a solar farm within Blackwater Bog located in County Offaly. The proposed development will be known as Blackwater Solar Farm.
To view the Project Information Booklet, please click here.
Common Queries & FAQ's
The site for the proposed solar farm is known as Blackwater Bog and is located in north-west Offaly. The site is located less than 1km south of Clonmacnoise, less than 1km north east of Shannonbridge, 6km southwest of Ballynahown and approximately 6.5km west of Ferbane.
To view the current proposed Development Study Area Map, please click here.
A solar farm is a large-scale renewable energy facility where large numbers of solar photovoltaic (PV) panels are used to generate renewable electricity from the sun. In this case it is proposed to mount the panels on the ground.
Solar PV panels are made from semi-conducting materials which generate direct current (DC) electricity when there is sunlight/daylight. Even on cloudy days there is enough light for the panels to produce electricity. Solar panels are already in use on the rooftops of both commercial and domestic buildings around the country.
The size of the solar farm will depend on a number of different criteria which are currently being assessed, for example: spacing between the panels, the slope of the landscape, proposed height of the arrays, and the rating (in watts) of each panel.
As a general guide, 1 megawatt (MW) of Solar PV panels will typically require a net area of 2 hectares but this can vary between 1.6 and 2.2 ha.
The solar photovoltaic (PV) panels will be mounted on metal frames, to a maximum height typically 3m above ground level.
Glint is a momentary flash of bright light, while Glare is a continuous source of bright light. Solar cells are designed to absorb light, not reflect it and therefore the potential for significant glint and glare will not arise as a result of the proposed development.
There will be some daytime noise during the construction phase; however, given the remoteness of the site and the short duration of construction (approx. 24 months), it is considered that noise emissions will not be an issue. When operational, the solar panels themselves will not produce noise as they operate silently. The inverter/transformer stations and main substation will emit only a very low level of noise and will be fully assessed as part of the application.
The construction will be broken into a number of phases including ground preparation, sub-station development and panel and inverter installation; this will be followed by testing and commissioning.
The solar farm will have a projected lifespan of 30 years and when a solar farm reaches the end of its operating lifespan, they can be removed and recycled.
We plan to submit the planning application for the solar farm to the Local Authority by early 2023.