Solar Farms Are Killing Pollinators And Burning Bees Alive

Peyton Plankton
By Peyton Plankton

In the race to transition from fossil fuels to cleaner energy, solar farms have emerged as a beacon of hope with a decent amount of greenwashing tossed in, of course.

Solar farms sound super cool, right? Huge areas filled with shiny panels, soaking up sunlight and turning it into electricity. 

But wait, there’s something these farms might be accidentally doing that’s not so great: they’re causing trouble for our buzzy friends, the bees.

First, let’s talk about why bees are so important. 

Bees are like nature’s delivery drivers. 

They move pollen from one flower to another, helping them produce the fruits and veggies we love. Imagine a world without strawberries, almonds, or tomatoes. That’s a world without bees!

What’s Going on at Solar Farms?

Now, solar farms. They’re big areas with lots of solar panels. And these panels can sometimes be a problem for bees. You see, flowers and plants used to grow where many of these solar farms now stand. Bees would visit, collect nectar, and live happy bee lives.

But with big stretches of solar panels and not enough plants, bees can’t find the food they need.

There’s another big issue.

We all know solar panels shine and shimmer in the sun, right? But to bees, these panels look like something else: big, shiny puddles of water. 

Bees get tricked by the light the panels give off, making them think they’ve found a cool spot to rest or get a drink.

Imagine you're a bee; you've been working tirelessly for hours collecting pollen and need a drink. It would be pretty easy to mistake that solar panel array for a quiet pond.

And this is where it gets sad. 

When bees get close to or land on these panels, they get hurt or killed, literally burned alive. 

Why? Because these panels are super-hot from soaking up the sun.

Bees aren’t like us; they work together as one big team. 

So, if a lot of bees get hurt by solar panels, the entire bee family (or hive) can struggle. It’s like if a soccer team lost half of its players; they’d have a hard time playing the game!

This whole problem shows us something bigger. Even when we try to do good things for our planet, like using solar energy, we need to think about everything and everyone it affects.

Green energy isn’t ‘green’ if it’s hurting, damaging, or even killing! 

We must look at the entire overall picture. We can’t just focus on one part and forget the rest. It’s a reminder that when we look out for our Earth, we also need to look out for all its creatures, big or small.

Why This Matters

Losing bees isn’t just bad for them. If too many bees go away, it could mean less food for us in the future. Entire industries including peanuts, almonds, and flowers depend on their pollination.

Solar Farms That Are Trying To ‘Help’… Aren’t

While it's a very picturesque image and certainly sells the 'eco-friendliness' of the solar farm, those flowers are literally attracting bees to their deaths.

Some solar farms are trying to be more bee-friendly, at least, that’s what they claim. How? Oh, by simply letting flowers and plants grow right around those panels. You know the ones! The same panels that burn and kill the bees that are too close to them.

One would assume that the best way to protect bees and other pollinators from getting scorched is by NOT attracting them in the first place.

But, of course, that doesn’t look as good as a quick press release claiming you solved the problem with some pretty landscaping!

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