Cornell University's Dryden solar farm sits next to fields hosting cows and is partially grazed by sheep.
Image by Cornell University

Cows next to Cornell's Dryden solar farm, which is partially grazed by sheep.

Ag & Solar

The Ag-Solar Working Group, under the umbrella of the Community and Energy Program Work Team, serves to support Cornell faculty and CCE educator efforts in responding to their community’s needs on the topic of solar development and land use, with a focus on commercial solar and its impact on agriculture in NYS.

NYS, driven by transformative state policies, is transitioning from fossil fuels to renewable energy at a rapid pace and scale, with implications that cross the boundaries of equity, farming, energy, natural resources, and community development – requiring a systems-level understanding. The Ag-Solar Working Group’s state-wide and cross-boundary scope is therefore particularly important to help our communities balance competing priorities for ag-land conservation and clean energy deployment.

The Group will achieve its goal by creating a space where Cornell faculty and CCE educators are given opportunities to discuss, learn, and collaborate on projects pertaining to current and timely needs and sharing information and resources on the topic of solar and ag-land use in NYS. If you're part of the Cornell University or Extension system and are interested in joining the Community and Energy Program Work Team, please visit the CCE PWT web site (other partners and key stakeholders may be included on request). 

If you're a land-owner interested in leasing or selling your land for solar development, please visit our Solar Land Leasing page. Visit Cornell University's Sustainable Solar web site for more information about the wide range of projects Cornell faculty, staff, and students are involved in. 

Much of the work of this working group has been in collaboration with partners, including NY and PA Farm Bureaus, the American Farmland Trust, the American Solar Grazing Association, Penn State Extension, and others. In particular, CCE and Penn State Extension have worked together on a series of webinars, recordings of which can be found at  

Last updated February 29, 2024