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Renewables and Biodiversity: from country-level smart siting areas to local scale effects

Encontro Scientia with Fernando Ascensão (Ecology of Environmental Change)
29 February 2024 . 12h00 (Lisbon time) . Room 2.2.14 (FCUL)
Online access • LINK 
Password • scientia

 

The ongoing energy transition is driving a significant expansion of renewable energy sources, notably solar farms.

In this talk, I will explore the current state of knowledge regarding this expansion and its implications for biodiversity conservation. I will discuss the rapid growth of solar farms in Portugal and their potential to pose serious challenges to biodiversity. This includes the direct loss of habitats due to land conversion, fragmentation of ecosystems, and disruptions to wildlife corridors. However, amidst these challenges, there are also opportunities for biodiversity conservation. Strategic siting of solar farms, incorporating landscape-level planning and habitat restoration efforts, can mitigate negative impacts and enhance ecological connectivity. Moreover, solar farms have the potential to provide additional ecosystem services, such as carbon sequestration and habitat provision for certain species. I will also address current gaps in research and identify areas for further investigation.


Tags: eChanges energy transition solar farms solar energy habitat fragmentation

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