KITTITAS, Wash. -

Kittitas County officials have given a controversial solar farm approval to move forward.

The Yakima Herald-Republic reports that on Monday the Kittitas County Hearings Examiner ruled against an appeal from neighbors of the planned 4.5 megawatt farm who had argued that the installation could cause significant environmental impacts.

Portland-based developer OneEnergy Renewables had said the proposed site of 48 acres of farmland east of Kittitas is ideal because it has good solar exposure, it's flat and it already has disturbed land that's close to transmission lines.

The farm would be the largest solar project in the state so far.

The community group that challenged the project is critical of citing the project on farmland, saying that approval of this solar farm sets a dangerous land-use precedent for the county.