When you work in the clean energy industry, people have high standards for your work. This includes the work you contract to others, such as land clearing, panel installation, and site restoration. At the end of the day, your brand is the name people will associate with your solar project. Make sure that anybody you work with has the same high standards as you do for your brand.
Land Clearing for Solar Projects
Once the property has been purchased and permits approved for a solar project, the site must be cleared before solar panels can be installed. Depending on the site, this could include a range of activities such as:
- Removing trees
- Clearing vegetation
- Installing temporary or permanent access roads
Although these might seem like simple tasks that any contractor could handle, solar sites often come with complications that not every provider, including your internal team, has experience with.
For example, not knowing to look for underground water pipes or gas lines can result in significant delays. Working around property lines may require specialized equipment and expertise, especially if tree removal is required. Not understanding how to maintain a stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP) can result in fines and damage to your brand.
The list goes on, but the key takeaway is that land clearing and site development are not as straightforward as they might seem. Many solar companies have learned this the hard way, but you can avoid common hurdles by working with an experienced land-clearing contractor.
Should You Outsource Land Clearing Services?
If you don’t have the internal resources for land clearing, the decision to outsource is an easy one. However, if you have some of the right equipment, it might be tempting to rent what you need and do the land clearing yourself. Although a solar company can find success with this approach, our experience has shown us that when a qualified land-clearing provider is not involved, the results often include unforeseen costs and project delays.
When deciding whether to outsource or what type of land-clearing services provider you want to hire, consider the following factors:
You want to feel confident that the team on your project has the necessary skills to clear the land safely, efficiently, and sustainably. Knowing how to use equipment is an essential skill, but not the only one required for solar site preparation. Work with a provider that has mechanized equipment with skilled staff that will allow this stage of the project to move quickly and stay on schedule.
Access to Materials and Equipment
A local contractor might have some of the necessary equipment to clear your site, but can they also easily get timber mats to create a temporary access road? Or stump grinders, chippers, track carriers, log jaws, and mowers? Working with a provider that specializes in land clearing services ensures they have the right tools for the job and experience with using them.
Expertise in Environmental Regulations
Compliance with federal and local environmental requirements is essential for protecting any brand, especially for solar companies. Look for a provider experienced with environmental compliance and the timeline for securing permits.
Land Clearing Services with YAK ACCESS
When you hire YAK ACCESS for land clearing services, you can be confident that you’re working with a team that is just as committed to protecting the environment as you are. You also get a team that has deep experience with utility projects of all types, so we know what to look for on a site, how to handle the unexpected, and best practices for environmental compliance. The results are on-time and on-budget land clearing for your solar project.
A commitment to producing clean energy and maintaining high environmental standards can help make the world a better place. Learn more about YAK ACCESS and how to meet Tier 2 diverse spend requirements in our white paper, How to Meet Diverse Spend Requirements for Your Next Access Solutions Project.