In order to stop the rapid destruction of natural reserves, a scientist has suggested combining solar power plants with natural reserves. tis could help in the efforts to provide green energy and increse wildlife conservation.
According to a report in New Scientist, Michael McGuigan from the Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York, has come up with this suggestion.
A sanctuary for 300 tigers, for example, would cover a patch of land about 50 kilometers across.
Surrounding this with a 5-kilometre-wide ring of solar panels would create a power plant producing 60 gigawatts of electricity, according to McGuigan.
Surrounding a tiger sanctuary with a ring of solar cells would generate power for local villages.
Some of that power could be used to electrify nearby villages. That would reduce the need for rural populations to forage for firewood, removing a major source of conflict between wild animals and villagers.
According to Asir Johnsingh, an expert on tiger conservation and adviser for WWF based in Bangalore, India, where sanctuaries border villages and cultivated land, solar power plants would benefit the local population.
For example, poor communities near the Kalakad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve in Tamil Nadu, India, are supplied with gas cylinders for their energy needs.
"But gas may become expensive," said Johnsingh.