Written for the AgriSolar Clearinghouse by Center for Rural Affairs
This thesis presents a case study of plant-pollinator interactions at a solar energy generation site in southwestern Oregon, a water-limited, dryland ecosystem. Results show no difference in visitation rates of insects to flowers located inside versus outside the solar array. These findings could prove useful when developing AgriSolar operations that include pollinators.
The article investigates the effects of solar arrays on plant composition, bloom timing and foraging behavior of pollinators from June to September (after peak bloom) in full shade plots and partial shade plots under solar panels as well as in full sun plots (controls) outside of the solar panels.
This study describes the manufacture and evaluation of a beehive box that is safe for inspection, optimum syrup fed, easily identifies the different states of the bee colony, and maximizes the colony health while preventing colony losses. An AgriSolar development may benefit in utilizing the findings from this study in relation to beehive boxes.
This study evaluates the monetary benefits of pollination services from installing honeybee hives in solar parks and discusses how the findings could inform policy and practice. The study includes an overview of field crops, fruit crops, pollination ecosystem service benefits as well as costs of honey beehives. These discussions could be used when developing AgriSolar operations that include various crops and pollinators.
The Town of Mount Morris commissioned this research to answer questions about the nascent solar-agricultural industry, assess opportunities to attract farmers to the EDF Renewables Morris Ridge Solar Energy Center, and identify viable markets for solar-raised products. The report addresses the current interest of local farmers in grazing sheep and establishing apiaries at Morris Ridge; summarizes surveys employed to discover regional demand for lamb and honey; and analyzes market opportunities for solar-raised lamb, honey, and related products.
This article highlights ongoing efforts to couple solar energy production with pollinator conservation, noting recent legal definitions of these practices. The authors summarize key studies from the field of ecology, bee conservation, and experience working with members of the solar industry (e.g., contribution to legislation defining solar pollinator habitat). These results suggest the addition of native, perennial flowering vegetation will promote wild bee conservation and more sustainable honey beekeeping.
This University of Florida Extension publication describes how to build a bear fence to protect apiaries. The publication includes details on fence chargers, T-post insulators, variations of fence wire(s), fence testers and other variations of materials related to building bear fencing in effort to protect apiaries.
This thesis provides best practices for native pollinator habitat establishment on solar farms in the United States. The report includes case study examples in North Carolina, New York, Maryland, South Carolina, Illinois, Michigan and Oregon. Various methods used in each case study include various implementation methods such as seed choices, solar-site constraints, development checklists and land management monitoring and evaluation.
This American Solar Grazing Association Beekeeping Agreement Template is a template for a contract between a solar site operator and a beekeeper for the establishment and maintenance of a solar site apiary. The arrangements outlined in this template may provide a number of benefits to both solar-site operators and beekeepers.