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MYTH: Solar panels contain harmful chemicals, have toxic runoff and poison the soil.
FACT: Solar panels have a glass front that protects the PV cell and an aluminum or steel frame. The frame and the sealed nature of the installed cells prevent leaching of trace metals, including cadmium telluride (CdTe), from
the modules.

 

MYTH: Solar parks cause farmland to be unfarmable forever.
FACT: Land can be reverted back to agricultural use at the end of the operational life for solar installations. A life of a solar installation is roughly 25-35 years and can provide a recovery period, increasing the value of that land
for agriculture in the future. Giving soil rest can also maintain soil quality and contribute to the biodiversity of
agricultural land.

 

MYTH: Solar parks do not generate additional revenue for local communities and only financially benefit those that have signed an easement.
FACT: Communities that host solar energy projects may benefit from taxes paid by companies like DTE, which
can be used to support roads and other community infrastructure. Solar energy projects can also bring jobs and additional economic benefits to the surrounding community.

 

MYTH: The presence of a solar park will raise your electric rates.
FACT: Electric rates will remain consistent amid new solar park developments. DTE is looking to construct new solar projects in Michigan to support its expanding variety of renewable energy voluntary customer offerings. If any additional costs result from new solar projects, they would only be applied to customers of DTE Electric that
voluntarily subscribe to one of these programs.

 

MYTH: Solar panels produce a lot of disruptive noise and glare.
FACT: The connection boxes and inverters used in solar parks do emit some noise, but it is generally only audible when standing near the equipment and is similar in volume to background noises. Most solar layouts aim to centralize inverter locations, putting them well inside the fence line of the project and limiting exposure. With proper design and siting, glare from solar panels can be effectively mitigated. Some methods include the use of
anti-reflective coatings and glass texturing for PV modules and the use of blinds and screens through landscaping.

 

MYTH: Solar parks endanger local wildlife.
FACT: Solar parks do not present a risk to local wildlife, including birds, deer, and other animals. In addition, it’s
becoming increasingly common for solar developers to plant wildflowers within their arrays, creating habitats
for bees and other pollinating species whose natural habitats are rapidly disappearing.

 

To learn more about solar energy, visit sun101.org. You can also find information on DTE’s renewable energy initiatives at dtecleanenergy.com.