Another week goes by and I find myself happily writing yet another article on the ever expanding awesomeness of solar power. Again, I am discussing the progress the Japanese are making by enhancing the power source that gave birth to us all, the sun.
Perhaps you will recall a few weeks ago that we discussed the Japanese and how they are making use of damaged golf courses and turning them into mega solar power stations, powering thousands of homes and flying the solar flag. This time around I touch base with you all on the similar but still significant Solar Agri Park.
The Solar Agri Park is basically a big greenhouse with solar panels fitted to the roof, with the regular greenhouse aim of growing vegetables and fruits, such as strawberries and tomatoes, and taking advantage of all that sun - with solar panels that currently power 170 homes in the region.
Not only that, but the greenhouse is also used as a location to teach local school children all the basics of greenhouses and the ins and outs of how solar power works. The Mitsubishi corporation relief fund has sponsored "Kidzania", the entertainment and educational centre that focus on children not only learning about greenhouses and solar as mentioned, but also the agricultural industry. Mitsubishi have also made donations for the formation of a larger educational experience for all walks of life on the Argri Park, aptly named the "Green Academy".
If you consider how the farmers are exploiting the sun for food, power and employment, you might find yourself questioning why other countries have yet to jump onboard. Heck, if someone doesn't get this started in New Zealand soon then I might just have to!
The Solar Agri park project is hoped to influence local farmers to invest in a similar sort of greenhouse, one that can handle the weight of a solar power system and to use the off set energy and put it back into the grid. This would not only compliment the earnings made of selling produce with extra money made by the solar power collected off the roof, but is a marvellous example of self sufficiency. Sounds like a fail-safe project to me, and one that I look forward to visiting one day in the near future.