Solar Panels on Canals: Water-Energy Win-Win
- Discover how two pioneering projects are merging energy production with water conservation to preserve agricultural land and conserve energy. Get the details on Project Nexus in California and the Gila River Indian Community project in Arizona.
Around the world, pilot projects are popping up that aim to combine energy production with water conservation. In California, the first-in-the-nation Project Nexus is poised to install 8,500 feet of solar panels on a canal, while in Arizona, the Gila River Indian Community has already begun construction on a 1-megawatt canal-top solar project, with a planned expansion to 150 miles of canals and completion expected in 2025. Both projects are expected to contribute to water conservation and the preservation of agricultural land, while offsetting the energy-intensive task of pumping water across vast distances.
How Can Solar Projects Help Water Conservation?
- Solar panels can be installed along canals to heat the water, reducing the need for pumping energy.
- Solar panels can be used to minimise evaporation from canals, preserving water for future use.
- Solar panels can be used to power water pumps, reducing the amount of energy needed to move water from one area to another.
- Solar panel systems can be used to treat wastewater, reducing the amount of water needed to be used for agricultural irrigation.
- Solar energy can be used to desalinate water, providing a reliable source of drinking water and reducing water shortages.
- Solar panels can be used to power water treatment plants, reducing the amount of energy needed to purify water.
- Solar energy can be used to power irrigation systems, reducing the amount of water needed for agricultural production.
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