Agrivoltaics Keep Solar Power Sites in Farming
National Public Radio news reported on how solar energy sites are working with farmers to combine energy production and food production on the same land, in a practice known as agrivoltaics. Keeping land in farming production can help solar companies overcome community opposition to new installations, and the two uses can complement one another. Sheep grazing in solar installations prevent the need for mowing, while the panels provide shade for grazing animals. Sites managed through grazing can offer other benefits, as well, such as pollinator habitat. The American Solar Grazing Association is a new industry group organized around the practice. Solar installations can also complement produce production by providing shade for crops, say researchers. Massachusetts is offering incentives for projects that combine solar with vegetable production.