The Downing team is buzzed up as they welcome bees onto several of their solar sites across the UK, from Cornwall and Somerset to East Sussex. The asset management division of the energy and infrastructure team at Downing is working in collaboration with local branches of the British Beekeepers Association and the operations and maintenance contractor across the sites to make this initiative a rezzzzounding success. Important factors that had to be considered include flexible access arrangements for the beekeepers and apiary fencing so that grazing sheep don’t get too close. The finished result is a renewable energy asset that has created an ecosystem that encompasses and encourages wildlife while generating renewable energy from the solar panels to support national and global efforts to combat climate change.
There are many benefits of keeping bees, who in fact contribute £651 million to the UK economy per year through their valuable contribution of pollinating food crops, as well as supporting 85% of the strawberry and apple crops in the UK that rely on bees to grow. With a slump in honeybee numbers since the 1970’s, it is important to Downing to support this pollinating species that form a crucial part of the environment and allow it to flourish.
Another delicious benefit of bees is of course, honey, that the beekeepers hope to be able to start collecting soon.
For more information on our energy and infrastructure team and what they're up to, visit https://www.downing.co.uk/business/energy-and-infrastructure