The Chinese are using an imaginative approach to utilising solar farms
We’ve always been a bit wary of large scale, ground mounted solar farms. They are often a long way from where the electricity demand is and they tie up land which would otherwise be used for food.
The Chinese are going flat out with solar generation but also have an issue with the land it uses especially near urban centres with high populations and rising demand for food. The answer? Hairy crabs, apparently. The FT reports on how Chinese farmers are using the installation of solar farms on their land as an opportunity to produce niche crops which thrive underneath the panels. Honeysuckle is one such high value crop which is compatible with solar installations; hairy crabs, of high value to Chinese gourmands, another.
So far, British farmers seem to have got far as running a few sheep among the solar support structures. A more imaginative approach to utilising the unique conditions which exist under the panels might make solar farms more commercially attractive once the subsidies run out.
Hairy crabs, anyone?
Read more at the Financial Times.