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Ohio approves largest US agrivoltiac project: 800 MW solar + 300 MW BESS, crops and livestock grazing

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Authorities in the US state Ohio have approved the Oak Run Solar project, an 800 MW solar power project with a 300 MW battery energy storage system (BESS) that is also claimed as America's largest agrivoltiac project.

Under the approval, granted by the Ohio Power Sitting Board (OPSB), four single-axis tracking solar arrays will be built in the three townships of Monroe, Somerford and Deercreek. They will occupy 4,400 acres within a defined, 6,050-acre project area. The project also entails construction of other regional transmission, mainly two transmission lines of length 3.5 miles.

Oak Run Solar LLC, developer of the project, will build access roads, an operations and maintenance building, underground and overhead electric collection lines, weather stations, inverters and transformers and a collection substation. The company will also plant crops between the solar panels and along the edge of the project, and graze livestock as well, as part of attempts to make the project "agrivoltaic".

OPSB claims this would be the country's largest agrivoltaic program and the first utility-scale solar energy plan for livestock grazing and row crops. Project conditions stipulate that after the first year, Oak Run must graze at least 1,000 sheep and 2,000 crop acres. Within eight years of starting, the project will include agrivoltaics on at least 70 percent of the farmable project area, about 4,000 crop acres. 

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