Solar energy plays a vital role in achieving Europe's energy transition. The EU plans to at least double solar capacity to 320GW by 2025 and almost 600-GW by 2030. Meanwhile, as many wildlife populations continue in free fall - with an average decline in global wildlife populations of 69% since 1970 (WWF)- the EU Nature Restoration Law seeks to give nature the space needed to recover.
Concerns of spatial scarcity often inform the discourse around the appropriate response to these two crises. Many of us will have heard questions like:
- How is nature expected to recover if increasingly more land is given over to energy generation?
- Or, conversely: Why should we prioritise biodiversity amid worsening climate and energy crises?
This is, however, a false dichotomy. Restoring biodiversity and expanding renewable energy infrastructure do not need to be at odds with one another.
The fifth webinar in our 'Energy & Nature' series examines how solar parks, when properly sited, designed and managed, can create new opportunities to restore ecosystems, allow biodiversity to thrive, and overcome spatial conflicts.