On-the-Ground Updates

Trial of sheeps with solar panels shows positive early stage

Jose Salman
Published Aug 25, 2020
A trial of sheep grazing on a solar farm in the central-west of New South Wales is hoping to shed light on the impact of sheep around solar panels. The issue of grazing near and under panels has been debated over the years, with some producers concerned over the use of prime agricultural land for solar panels. Early results after the first 12 months of a four-year-trial have shown positive results, for that trial hopes to shed more light on the grazing of livestock on solar farms.

Head of the trial committee Graeme Ostini said the trial started in mid-2019 as part of other trials being run across the country. "We've brought a number of bloodlines together, and the wethers are doing exceptionally in amongst the 210 hectares of panels," he said. "The sheep spent the first six months of the trial in intense drought conditions, and since the beginning of the year we've seen plenty of rain." "We noticed that the panels were effective in capturing whatever rain that fell during the drought and allowed the water to drip down onto the ground allowing a lot of feed to grow."
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