Silicon Ranch in the US state of Tennessee has announced the implementation of what it is calling ‘regenerative energy’ at the 53MW Millington Solar Farm, co-locating it’s solar PV array with grazing for over 1,000 ewes.
Regenerative energy co-locates clean energy generation and regenerative agriculture to manage vegetation, restore ecosystems and biodiversity, sequester carbon and improve water quality.
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Silicon Ranch is working in partnership with Cabriejo Ranch, which currently supports Silicon’s regenerative energy portfolio covers on more than 1,500 acres in Tennessee, Mississippi and Arkansas.
Cabriejo Ranch owner, Trent Hendricks, said, “Having the opportunity to do more of the restorative work that we love to do here in Millington, that enables us to produce more high quality, nutrient dense, local food, on land that is also producing clean, renewable energy, is phenomenal, and we’re honoured to partner with such a visionary leader like Silicon Ranch.”
The Millington Solar Farm is the result of a public-private partnership with the City of Millington, the U.S. Navy, Memphis, Light, Gas and Water (MLGW), Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and Silicon Ranch.
The facility is located on 348 acres of private land Silicon Ranch purchased from the Millington Industrial Development Board and on 72 acres it leases from the US Navy. Silicon Ranch owns, operates and maintains the Millington Solar Farm, which provides power to the NSA Mid-South and TVA and integration of regenerative energy further supports the company’s missions.
TVA and Silicon Ranch are in the process of replicating the regenerative energy platform and the companies have codified a set of standards for the platform, with the goal of expanding implementation of the concept across more land under management by the solar industry.
In less than two years, regenerative energy has scaled from a 50-acre pilot to a 2,500-acre programme and the platform is anticipated to grow more than 6,000 by the end of 2020.
Matt Beasley, Chief Commercial Officer at Silicon Ranch, said, “We’re especially eager to continue refining this innovative platform in our home state of Tennessee, where agriculture has long been an essential part of the local economy and cultural identity.”
“The fundamental principle of our Regenerative Energy platform is that we recognize our land as a valuable natural resource that we can harness to sequester carbon and restore biodiversity,” said Michael Baute, Silicon Ranch’s Director of Regenerative Energy and Land Management.
Originally published in a slightly different form on Renewable Energy World.