Enel Green’s “Los Naranjos” and “Las Corchas” solar power plants in Carmona, Andalusia, have been honored with the prestigious Excellence in Sustainability Certification for their groundbreaking Agrivoltaics practices. The award recognizes their efforts to integrate solar energy with agriculture, protect biodiversity, and benefit the local community.
Operating since 2020, these two photovoltaic plants are located in Carmona, Seville, and together house approximately 260,000 solar panels, with a total capacity of 100 MW. From the onset of construction, the plants demonstrated a strong commitment to sustainability. Employing eco-friendly measures like rainwater collection systems, energy-efficient lighting, waste segregation, and an electric vehicle for on-site transportation, they ensured a minimal ecological impact.
What sets these solar plants apart is their agrivoltaic approach, which seamlessly merges solar power with agricultural and livestock activities in the area. The land surrounding the solar panels is utilized for cultivating aromatic plants such as fennel, rosemary, and coriander. Additionally, the pastures are home to over 2,000 sheep, and beekeeping thrives with 35 hives, housing more than 80,000 bees. This integration not only preserves agricultural land but also promotes local trade, offering high-quality, pesticide-free produce like honey.
The plants incorporate cutting-edge technologies, further enhancing their sustainability. The utilization of double-sided photovoltaic panels, capable of harnessing both direct sunlight and reflected sunlight from the ground, significantly boosts their overall efficiency. To ensure the well-being of the bees, the beehives are equipped with automated systems that regulate air circulation, temperature, and humidity, while real-time monitoring through webcams and automated weighing systems optimizes honey production.
Innovative agricultural techniques like hydroseeding have been employed for soil restoration. Hydroseeding involves spreading a water-based solution containing seeds, fertilizers, pH correctors, mulch, and additives on the soil, leading to faster and more successful rejuvenation.
Enel Green’s dedication to creating shared value (CSV) is evident in their approach, where they prioritize benefits not only for their company but also for the local community. By embracing agrivoltaic practices and investing in sustainable technologies, Enel Green not only contributes to clean energy generation but also supports economic growth and ecological preservation in the region.
The Excellence in Sustainability Certification, bestowed by UNEF, signifies a significant milestone for both Enel Green and the Enel Group. It highlights their commitment to promoting renewable energy solutions that are environmentally friendly and socially inclusive. The recognition reinforces the importance of sustainable practices in the solar energy sector, encouraging further innovation and adoption of such practices.
The success of the solar plants in Carmona showcases the potential of blending renewable energy with agriculture, paving the way for a greener and more sustainable future. Enel Green’s dedication to progress and their active participation in a just energy transition sets a positive example for the industry, benefitting not only the company but also the local communities they serve.