Agrisolar News Roundup Photo

AgriSolar News Roundup: New DOE Initiatives, Solar Parks, Supercomputing

DOE Announces Initiatives to Increase Community Solar Deployment

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) made announcements during the National Solar Partnership Summit (NCSP) addressing new initiatives that will unlock barriers related to the deployment of community solar. These initiatives will assist the NCSP in reaching one of their goals of creating $1 billion in energy savings by 2025. Another goal by the NCSP is to “enable community solar to power the equivalent of 5 million households,” according to a recent report by DOE.

Supercomputer to be Used on USDA-Backed Agrivoltaics Project

An agrivoltaic project at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) is being funded at $10 million by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) over the next four years. Researchers will study agrivoltaic operations in three states: Arizona, Colorado and Illinois. The study aims to address the tension between crop yields and energy production that arises when the two compete for the same land resources. Read more about the project here.

Solar Parks Could Boost Ground-Nesting Bumble Bee Populations

A recent study on solar park management methods in the UK shows that solar parks managed as meadows instead of turf grass are highly beneficial for populations of ground-nesting bumble bees. Solar management scenarios were studied by researchers at Lancaster University and found that solar parks managed as meadows offer the most resources to bumble bees, allowing four times the population capacity as solar parks managed as turf grass. To learn more about the research, click here.