Back to OurEnergyLibrary search

Community Centered Solar Development (CCSD) Study Interviews

Community Centered Solar Development (CCSD) Study Interviews

Full Title: Community Centered Solar Development (CCSD) Study Interviews
Author(s): Doug Bessette, Joseph Rand, Ben Hoen, Karl Hoesch, Jake White, Sarah Mills, Robi Nilson
Publisher(s): Berkeley Lab
Publication Date: June 23, 2023
Full Text: Download Resource
Description (excerpt):

Large-scale solar (LSS, defined here as ground-mounted photovoltaic projects ≥1 MWDC) has grown rapidly in the U.S., accounting for nearly half of new electric generating capacity added to the U.S. grid in 2022. All sources of electricity bring positive and negative impacts to hosting communities and the rapid growth of LSS has increased the urgency to understand those impacts. Yet, information about the potential positive and negative impacts of LSS on host communities, and the factors or drivers leading to support or opposition to a project, is lacking. This information gap limits how project developers, municipalities, and local siting authorities can address community concerns and appropriately align proposed projects to best suit and benefit local communities.

As part of Berkeley Lab’s Community-Centered Solar Development (CCSD) project, this research set out to explore deep insights and perceptions from LSS stakeholders that only qualitative data can provide to identify key factors driving project success or threatened failure. Case studies, such as those utilized in this research, are uniquely adept at capturing the subjective experience of individuals and at identifying variables, structures, and interactions between stakeholders. Our case studies included 54 semi-structured interviews across 7 different LSS sites, representing a diversity of geographies, project sizes (MW), site types (i.e., greenfield, agrivoltaic, and brownfield / contaminated sites), zoning jurisdiction types, and more. In addition to local residents living in close proximity to these LSS sites, we interviewed other key stakeholders involved in the projects such as developers, decision-makers, utility representatives, landowners, and individuals from community-based organizations.

All statements and/or propositions in discussion prompts are meant exclusively to stimulate discussion and do not represent the views of, its Partners, Topic Directors or Experts, nor of any individual or organization. Comments by and opinions of Expert participants are their own.

Sign up for our Press Release Distribution List

    Your Name (required)

    Your Email (required)

    Please sign me up to receive press releases from