Solar farm can reduce carbon footprint

Your editorial “Trees-vs.-solar is a choice the Island need not make” [April 12] accurately expresses the critical need to produce solar energy on Long Island. However, Newsday mentions a “false choice” between trees and solar. This is simply not the case with the proposed Middle Island solar farm in Mastic.

My partners and I have owned and paid taxes on this property for 30 years. For the past four years, we’ve worked with the Town of Brookhaven on a proposal to create a 19.5-megawatt solar farm. It is supported by many Long Island environmental advocates. Municipal offers to purchase the property were never made during this period. That leaves two actual choices.

The L1 industrial zoning allows for the construction of 750,000 square feet of industrial space in multiple 50-foot-high buildings with parking. Rather than propose such a use, we have put forward a responsible solar project that could power roughly 3,100 Long Island homes, reduce the Island’s carbon footprint, help wean us off fossil fuels, preserve 39 acres of woodlands and protect the Forge River.

I’m passionate about solar energy as part of the solution to our man-made environmental crisis.

Jerry Rosengarten

Southampton

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Editor’s note: The writer is the managing member of the Middle Island Solar Farm corporation.