🥦 Huge benefits from growing broccoli shaded by solar panels
Solar panels take up a lot of space and farmers usually want to grow crops on the surface where solar panels would work best. Now, scientists have found that a certain vegetable thrives in the shade from the panels. This vegetable is broccoli.
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A study conducted by Chonnam National University in South Korea has deep dived into the research area of agrivoltaics, which is the study of how solar power and agriculture can coexist and also benefit from each other. There is especially one crop that thrives in the shade from the panels and that is broccoli.
What the study found was that the shade created by the solar panels help broccoli get a deeper shade of green which makes them more attractive to grocery stores as well as customers. By being more attractive to buyers, farmers can make more money. Crop size of nutritional value wasn’t affected by growing in the shade.
By being able to plant crops and have solar panels on the same area, farmers will also be able to make more money on energy production. The income from solar power can be 10 times the income of only selling broccoli. By doing both farmers will benefit greatly economically.
Last but not least, growing broccoli under solar panels reduces the evaporation. This is great because if less water evaporates, less irrigation is needed.
All of these findings were published in the journal Agronomy.
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