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Renewable energy new plant
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Renewable energy - solar power

There’s no escaping the fact that farmers are having to work harder than ever to boost their bottom line. And, with trying times looking set to continue as Brexit looms closer, there are ways to unlock the value of farmland – without having to sacrifice your way of life.  

It’s not always necessary to simply sell land in its entirety to the highest bidder. As renewable energy continues to play a major role in farm diversification, Dave Ogden, director at electrical contractor, Smith Brothers Ltd, explains how green power is assisting farmers with their future economic plans. 

Historically, arable farmland would be home to row-upon-row of neatly organised crops. But now, the grid format is increasingly being adopted by an expanse of solar panels, generating electricity for use on site. Similarly, it isn’t uncommon to see cattle grazing beneath the blades of a wind turbine. 

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energy production - a mountainside with wind turbine and solar panels

Many farmers are turning to energy production when diversifying – and why not? You’ve got the land, there are experts at hand to help and you’ll be producing green fuel. Saving the plant in fact! But there’s more to energy production than setting out your equipment, says Paul Hutchens, who is CEO of Midlands-based solar specialists Eco2Solar. Paul is a board member of the Solar Trade Association (STA), the UK's leading solar industry voice. Here, Paul discusses some of the ethical issues surrounding energy distribution in the UK, including the rights to energy access…

The energy market is in a state of change. Technological, economic, environmental, and political developments are all having an unprecedented influence on how the UK considers, consumes and stores energy. There are well-publicised issues around how and where energy is produced, but the distribution of this energy is a subject that raises more questions. Is access to energy a basic human right? What are the ethical implications of storing and sharing energy? And who should be making decisions on what we buy and what we share?