Agricultural Solar: The ins and outs
Many farms are looking to install solar panels in order to lower their energy bills and preserve profitability as the price of power rises year over year.
Farms are perfect places for large solar PV systems because they have expansive roofs and a lot of vacant space. These systems can offset high daily electricity use and safeguard your company from future increases in electricity bills. The enormous uptake of solar panels in the agricultural industry speaks loudly and is a clear indication of their dependability and excellent returns.
Farms that make the investment and install solar panels gain considerable financial and environmental advantages.
Solar panels were regarded as a marginal and unproven technology less than ten years ago. After ten years, solar energy is now the source of energy with the fastest global growth.
Can You Put Solar Panels on Agricultural Land?
Solar panels can be installed on agricultural property without a doubt. In fact, many farmers are starting to favour this option. It is great for producing clean and renewable energy to locate solar panels on agricultural property since it frequently has enough room for them. Depending on the specific requirements and the form of the farm, solar panels can be put on the ground or on elevated structures.
How Much Space Do Solar Farms Require?
Approximately 25 acres of land is required for every 5 megawatts (MW) of installation while 6 to 8 acres will be needed for a 1MW farm. Space isn’t just needed for the panels themselves but for essential equipment like inverters and storage batteries too. There must also be enough space between the rows of panels to allow for maintenance access.
This is just a ballpark figure, therefore you must consult a solar panel installation company to determine the precise area needs for your farm by performing a site-specific inspection.
How Often Should Solar Panels Be Serviced?
Although solar panels require little upkeep, they do need routine maintenance to work at their best. The local environment and the calibre of the solar panels are just two of the variables that affect how frequently maintenance is required. Solar panels typically need to be checked over and cleaned once or twice a year. The efficiency of the panels can be decreased by accumulation of dust, grime, and debris, which can be removed through routine cleaning. Regular inspections of the system's parts, including the wiring and inverters, are also necessary to spot problems early and save downtime.
Are Agricultural Solar Panels Worth It on a Smaller Scale Farm?
Smaller farms can benefit from investing in agricultural solar panels as well. Smaller farms can nevertheless gain a lot from solar energy, even if larger farms may have more space for solar installations. Agricultural solar panels are a viable option for smaller farms for the following reasons:
The Benefits of Solar Panels for Farmers
Solar panels have numerous advantages for farmers that go beyond simple cost reduction. By giving farmers a dependable and sustainable source of electricity, solar energy has the potential to revolutionise the agricultural industry.
Whatever the size of the farm, solar panels provide farmers with a strong return on investment (ROI). You can do it and lower or even eliminate your electricity expenditures, making it a great method to save money.
Given the high ROI, the numerous incentives and rebates offered by governments and utilities have in dwindled in recent years, however, in some specific instances funding is still available to further boost the return on investment for solar installations.
No Requirement on Rainfall
Solar panels are independent of precipitation, unlike some other renewable energy sources like hydropower. They are a dependable source of power for farms located in varied regions since they can create electricity as long as there is sunlight.
Solar energy is pure and free of pollutants. Farmers may lessen their carbon footprint and help to create a more sustainable agricultural sector by switching to solar power. Consumers may also be sensitive to the environment, which could increase the marketability of agricultural products.
No matter the size of the farm, agricultural solar systems have several benefits for the farmer. These systems lower power prices, offer a dependable and clean source of energy, and support environmental sustainability. It's crucial to carry out a site-specific study before considering the installation of solar panels on agricultural property to identify the necessary space and potential energy savings.
Solar power stands out as a useful and financially viable choice as the agricultural sector continues to embrace renewable energy sources. In addition to lowering their operating expenses, farmers who use solar energy can significantly contribute to the transformation of agriculture into a more environmentally friendly and sustainable industry.