FAQ

ESLLC is contributing to the economics of the Pahrump community with the development of the 20 MW (Mega Watt) Solar project.  It will provide jobs, and community contribution toward worthy causes.   Frequently asked questions are found below.

Solar Plant Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

A list of frequently asked questions about solar energy development

Below is a list of frequently asked questions about the Solar Energy Development with the bulk of the plant located on the southern end of the property at Basin Ave.  in the 3700 block.

Question: Will the solar project increase the cost of our electricity?  

Answer: The developer does not set the price of retail electricity per kilowatt hour.    We sell below the actual retail price, because we do not pay the bills that the utility has to pay for their buildings, equipment, employees, and the power they purchase to light up your home, or your air conditioning or charge up your cell phone, and so on.

Question: What is solar energy? 

Answer: The terms "solar energy" or "solar power" describe the process by which the suns solar rays are used to generate mechanical power or electricity. Solar panels or modules convert the energy from the sun into electrical energy. This energy can be used for electricity to power homes, businesses, schools, and other energy consumers.  For more information on solar energy and solar energy development, visit National Renewable Energy Laboratory website at www.nrel.gov

Question: How is the energy in the solar panels captured?  

Answer: Sunlight hits the photovoltaic cells, converting photons into electricity.   Solar panels are often grouped together into a single solar power plant, also known as a solar plant, farm or park, and generate bulk electrical power. Electricity from these solar panels is fed into a utility grid and distributed to customers just as it is with conventional power plants.

Question How big is the solar plant?

Anwer:  The Solar plant or plant will cover 2560'(E-W) x 990'(N-S) north from Basin Avenue. The solar plant will produce 20MW. The plant produces enough electricity to power 6,000 homes with certified green energy.  There is no use of water on a continual basis other than the minor amount needed for intermittent panel cleaning.   Water trucks will be used once or twice a year to clean the panels.  An aesthetic fence or other visual buffer will be placed around the perimeter.

What are solar panels made of?

Anwer:  All electric-generating solar panel, no matter their size, are comprised of cells on a panel, and set into a frame.  The panel is on a single axis tracker to follow the sun across the sky.

Question: Are there good solar resources in Pahrump?

Answer:  Solar energy is very abundant in southern Nevada, including Pahrump.   The energy is measured in a square meter.  For our site, the energy produced is as high as anywhere on the planet.

Question: How many homes can be powered by a megawatt of solar-generated electricity?

Answer:  According to Solar Energy Industries Association, 1 megawatt (MW) of solar-generated power can supply electricity to approximately 240 to 300 households per year.

Question: What are the advantages of solar-generated electricity?

Answer:  Numerous public opinion surveys have consistently shown that the public prefers solar and other renewable energy forms over conventional sources of power generation. Solar energy is a free, renewable resource, so no matter how much is used today, there will still be the same supply in the future. Solar energy is also a source of clean, non-polluting, electricity. Unlike conventional power plants, solar plants emit no air pollutants or greenhouse gases.

Question: What are the economic obstacles to greater solar power usage?

Answer: Even though the cost of solar power has decreased dramatically in the past 10 years, the technology requires a higher initial investment than fossil-fueled generators. Roughly 80% of the cost is the equipment, with the balance being for site preparation and installation. If solar generating systems are compared with fossil-fueled systems on a "life-cycle" cost basis (counting fuel and operating expenses for the life of the generator), however, solar costs are much more competitive with other generating technologies because there is no fuel to purchase and minimal operating expenses.

Question: Are there environmental problems facing solar power?

Answer:  Although solar power plants have relatively little impact on the environment compared to fossil fuel power plants, there is some concern over the wildlife habitat impacts given the size of the solar array (the panels on their frames).   Most of these problems have been resolved or greatly reduced through technological development or by properly siting solar plants.   Solar power has significantly lower environmental impact compared to other power generating plants.

Question: Is the Solar Plant hazardous to birds and bats?

Answer:  No.

Question: Does a Solar Plant reflection from the panels affect adjacent homes or aircraft?

Answer:  The panels are structured with built in anti-reflection material that does not interfere with the process of conversion to electricity.  The adjacent homes or aircraft are not affected by the panels as very little, if any reflection is produced.

Question: Is a solar plant noisy?

Answer: Under most conditions, modern solar plants are quiet.

Question: Do solar plants pose a safety hazard?

Answer:  Unlike most other generation technologies, solar plants do not use combustion to generate electricity, and hence don't produce air emissions. Contamination of surface or ground water or soils is highly unlikely.  There are no safety hazards to a solar plant.

Question: Are there other drawbacks to the use of solar energy?

Answer:  The major challenge to using solar as a source of power is its production of energy during the daylight hours. Solar energy can now be stored and can be harnessed to meet the timing of electricity demands.  The solar plant will have batteries for storage which will help deliver power even after the sun goes down.

Question: Is solar energy good for the economy?

Answer:  Solar energy avoids the external or societal costs associated with conventional resources, namely, the trade deficit from importing foreign oil and other fuels, the health and environmental costs of pollution, and the cost of depleted resources. Solar energy is a domestic, reliable resource that provides thousands of jobs for Americans in the US, from rooftops to plant operations and maintenance, as well as security.

Question: Is the cost of solar power competitive with conventional power plants?

Answer:  According to the U.S. Department of Energy, new, utility-scale solar projects are being built all around the United States today, with wholesale energy costs ranging from 3.9 cents per kilowatt-hour, to 5 cents or more. These costs are competitive with the direct operating costs of many conventional forms of electricity generation now.   The retail sale per kWh by the utility covers its personnel, buildings, equipment, distribution and transmission lines and substations, in addition to the energy.

Question: Where can I learn more about solar energy?

Answer:  There are many web sites with information on solar power, solar power technology, and solar energy development issues, including environmental concerns.

Question: Why is a Development Agreement needed for solar energy development?

Answer:  The Development Agreement is needed to maintain compliance with county, state and federal laws and regulations that require government agencies to evaluate the effects of its actions on the environment. The Development Agreement will also provide clarity for obligations of development of the project to help facilitate project financing.

Question: What is the scope of your analysis in the Development Agreement?

Answer  The scope of the County Development Agreement includes an assessment of the positive and negative environmental, social, and economic impacts of solar energy development; discussion of relevant mitigation measures to address these impacts; and identification of appropriate, programmatic policies and best management practices (BMPs) to be.

Question: What are land use plans?  

Answer: Land use plans are planning and management documents that define how resources will be managed within a specific planning area and establish restrictions on activities to be undertaken in that planning area. They are developed by the County in accordance with applicable regulations and in conjunction with interested stakeholders.  The solar plant will comply with County regulations.

Question: What impacts are addressed in the County Development Agreement?  

Answer: The County Development Agreement pays special attention to County resources, which involve important issues associated with the solar energy development on the environment and public works.   The Site Plan and Solar plans must be submitted and approved by the County.

Question: Is your company prepared to compensate us for loss of property value?

Answer:   I googled a page of your question to get several third party answers.  I did not pick and choose, I just copied the page.  Most opinions show that the solar park will not lower your property value.  We intend to make the property around the array a park for the neighborhood, as well.  We will do a survey with the neighbors to see what is needed and wanted in the park. In addition, if at any time after the park is built, you want to sell your property and have an appraisal done, and show that the property is not as valuable as it was before the Solar Park went in, then we would compensate you the difference.  I have to get an OK from my team on this, but I am pretty certain your property value will not be affected, and may actually go up for various reasons, some of which are noted herein.

Generally speaking, solar plants are very passive in nature and my gut feeling is that if properly built it will not have an adverse impact on property values. Keep in mind that this is strictly my opinion. Lee Dworshak is a Realtor® with Keller Williams LA Harbor Realty in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA.

Answer: forum.solar-electric.com › General Solar Power Topics

Re: Solar farms decrease property values?!? What do you think? Since there is a septic tank outfit, a porta-biffy supplier, and a cement vendor all in that same area, one would think a solar farm would raise property values.

https://solarinresidential.blogspot.com/p/blog-page.html

Could a Solar Farm reduce the value of your property? ... Here is some good links with information for you on what a Solar Farm could do to your Property Values. When we buy our properties we pay a price for a property that is in a certain zoning. What good is zoning if they can change it to meet commercial needs?

www.marshallindependent.com/news/local-news/2016/06/solar-farm...

Four area residents, with property in Section 28 of Stanley Township, appeared together at the Lyon County Board of Appeal and Equalization on Tuesday. Ron Weidauer, Tom Allex, Chuck Muller and Janelle Geurts all asked that the value of their property be reduced, to reflect its being close to the Marshall Solar Project.

https://www.solarpowerworldonline.com/2015/12/do-solar-leases...

Do solar leases decrease home property values? By Steven Bushong | December 17, 2015 Article by Timothy Tredwell, Director of Engineering, Research & Analysis, Center for Sustainable Energy

appraisersforum.com › … › Urgent - Help Needed

Feb 07, 2015 · Do nearby owners express WHY they think their property values are impacted? Not like solar farms make noise. Not like they make smells, okay, maybe a fried crow here and there.

https://www.energysage.com/.../why-go-solar/increased-property-values

Solar panels increase property values Increase home value 3-4% by installing a solar panel system. Multiple studies have shown that homes with solar panel systems are valued and sold at prices above similar homes in their area.

https://www.quora.com/How-can-I-argue-against-the-construction-of...

We know from data in the US that solar increases property values for residential solar. I'm sure it is going to increase the property value for your neighbor who has the array. I have seen absolutely no data that indicates it would reduce your property value as a neighbor. Solar panels increase property values Increase home value 3-4% by installing a solar panel system. Multiple studies have shown that homes with solar panel systems are valued and sold at prices above similar homes in their area.

Question: Is your company prepared to compensate to the highest dollar of any animals lost because of said station?

Answer:  We have a federal law that we must comply to regarding any animals or specific plants found to live on the property.  This is called the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA).   You can google this as well.  We have an environmental company ready to do a full inspection of the land, and we will comply to all requirements.

Question: How much hotter will this make the area?   July and August now.

Answer:   Because the array is absorbing the sunlight around the area, it may be cooler in the summer.   Here is data from a study that was done, and I’m sure you can find additional information, if needed.  “Solar panels change the way sunlight is reflected and absorbed by the Earth. Any radiation they take in is radiation that’s not being absorbed by the Earth. This leads to a cooling effect in the region surrounding the array. In fact, the first two simulations in this study, which assumed solar panel installations throughout the world’s desert and urban areas, produced a 3.6-degrees Farenheit regional cooling in the desert regions.”

Question: Will we be getting said power from said station as some sort of compensation for having to look at it?

Answer:   the Public Utility Commission regulates how power is priced and sold to the public.   We do not have the authority to do what you’re asking.  However, we are selling the energy at a very low price, and the utility is a non-profit, so logically this should be reflected on the homeowner price paid.  But there are a lot of expenses to providing electricity to the community.

We are also proposing an in home, safe, battery system, if the homeowner desires it, from which energy can be stored and some sold back to the utility by the homeowner.  We call it The Box.  There is a lot more data on this, and forgive me if I can’t get into all the details now, but it is exciting.   I would like to know what you think of this concept?  In addition, we have to comply with County regulations in how the park looks.  We have the intention to make it as aesthetic as we are able, and as enjoyable for the residents who live around the area.

Question: Thank you in advance for any answers you give now.

Answer:   You’re welcome, and if you have any other questions please let me know.  We are looking forward to servicing the area with energy from the sun, and getting to know our neighbors.  We will have questions for you too, as we move forward, to get your opinion on the park plans and community worthy cause and other such.