The recent rapid promotion of renewable energy technology (RET) worldwide may have led to a greater social impact on local communities, where multiple otherwise-small individual units of RET are concentrated in one place, as may occur in the case of small photovoltaic power generating units, for example. This study examines such a case of the dissemination of innovative agrivoltaic systems (AVSs), a system in which photovoltaic power facilities are installed above cultivated farmland, across Japanese rural areas.

Despite the mature and promising potential for solar photovoltaic (PV) technology to retrench global reliance on fossil fuels, large-scale PV development is experiencing complex challenges, including land use conflict and — as the scale of solar has increased — social resistance, which has previously been more commonly associated with large-scale wind farms. Growth in large-scale PV development can create land use disputes, especially in instances of competition between land for agriculture versus energy production. This history and growing concern over land use highlights the challenge of meeting the soaring demands for solar power while conserving rural and agricultural lands. It is posited that the impact of solar development on land will be diminished by siting PV in a manner that is compatible with multiple uses, suggesting changes in conventional practices will be necessary. The specific intent of this study was to draw insight about solar development from participant experience, and responses indicate that the most considerable opportunities and barriers center on social acceptance and public perception issues. Perspectives about the opportunities and barriers to agrivoltaic development were captured via interviews with solar industry professionals, and inductive analysis revealed that interviewees were most focused on opportunities and barriers that correspond with Wüstenhagen et al.’s three dimensions of social acceptance: market, community, and socio-political factors. The social acceptance of renewable energy is shaped by a complex interplay among market, community, and socio-political factors. While this framework is constructive for understanding the varying dimensions of social acceptance, Devine-Wright et al. assert that it is weak in terms of the relationships between dimensions, suggesting that further research should apply a holistic approach for discerning the interdependence among factors shaping social acceptance of renewable energy. The purpose of this study is therefore to explore the perceptions of industry professionals in the U.S. and consider the implications of the identified opportunities and barriers from a social science perspective. To address global demands for both food and energy, the relationship between critical land uses must become complementary rather than competitive. Because social acceptance of renewable energy technology is pivotal to energy transitions, this study reflects a proactive attempt to understand agrivoltaics from a solar industry professional’s perspective to better understand the significant opportunities and barriers to development. This research suggests that agrivoltaics are potentially accretive to the long-term growth of the solar industry, possessing the capacity to increase social acceptance of local solar developments. While the agrivoltaic concept is widely supported by the participants in this study, popularity of an emerging technology among industry experts may not indicate local level acceptance of a specific development. As new energy technologies such as agrivoltaics transcend niche applications to become more prevalent, localized resistance is to be anticipated and the dimensions of social acceptance, including the opportunities and barriers associated with each dimension, can help inform decision making to enhance the growth of agrivoltaic development.

The innovative Agrophotovoltaics (APV) system technology combines agricultural biomass and solar power production on the same site and aims at reducing the conflict between food and power production. Unrelated to this benefit, this technology may impact the landscape negatively and could thus be subject to public opposition and/or restraining frameworks. The presented study offers a System Dynamics (SD) approach, through Causal Loop Diagrams (CLDs) models, based on the results of citizen workshops, literature research, and expert discussions on the technology. A comprehensive analysis of the driving and restraining forces for the implementation of APV-technology and expected or potential impacts reveals influential factors. Hence, this SD approach identifies bottlenecks and conflicting objectives in the technology implementation that need to be further addressed.

With the coming of the 21st century in the U.S., reliance on fossil fuels, in particular coal, decreased while renewable energy sources increased their contribution to the U.S. energy portfolio. The factors behind this emerging trend toward a decreased reliance on coal are many, including economic as well as policy goals. Nationally, support is strong for the general transition to renewable energy, but this support can decline at the local level particularly if renewable energy is perceived as have negative local economic impact, impeding implementation. However, some look at this as part of a transition to a new economic power structure. Due to a lack of research on identifying public preferences for energy production in the United States, the authors conducted a national survey to identify drivers and barriers of acceptance of different types of electrical energy production.

Given the proven technical, economic, and environmental advantages provided by agrivoltaic systems, increased proliferation is anticipated, which necessitates accounting for the nuances of community resistance to solar development on farmland.

This paper provides a conceptual exploration of how a proposed framework can guide decision making for solar development across multiple scales and settings, while also illuminating the potential barriers and bottlenecks that may limit the potential of solar energy development to occur in scales and forms that receive community acceptance and at the pace necessary to address the greenhouse gas emissions currently contributing to the rapidly changing global climate.

The identified concerns in this study can be used to refine the technology to increase adoption among farmers and to translate the potential of agrivoltaics to address the competition for land between solar PV and agriculture into changes in solar siting, farming practice, and land-use decision-making.

As a result of the lack of consensus, a new qualitative theoretical framework is proposed that can serve as a basis for future research in the field of the integration of solar energy and its aesthetic impact. The framework comprises three sub-impacts: land use, solar system energy and glare.

As the number of solar parks in the UK increases, there is growing interest in the interaction of wildlife with ground-mounted photovoltaic (PV) solar panels. The aim of this document is to identify potential ecological issues of solar PV (as relevant to the UK).

This paper briefly describes the potential value of agrivoltaic systems for resource-poor, smallholder farmers in dryland areas of Central and West Asia and North Africa, with general applicability to regions that are characterized by similar environments for economic, policy and climate related challenges.