Addressing the Issue of Stormwater Run-off

Through the Photovoltaic Stormwater Management Research and Testing (PV-SMaRT) project, researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), in partnership with the University of Minnesota, Great Plains Institute, and Fresh Energy, conducted field research on storm water infiltration and runoff at five geographically dispersed utility-scale solar sites and used the collected data to validate a computer model that helps developers and regulators to predict and manage storm water flow.

With the PV-SMaRT Runoff Calculator, solar developers and regulators can now accurately estimate the amount of storm water runoff from ground-mounted solar facilities and develop appropriate mitigation strategies. These new capabilities can potentially reduce the construction costs of ground-mounted solar arrays while enabling effective stormwater management. The project also developed best practices for storm water management at solar sites. By implementing these best practices, developers can minimize stormwater runoff and avoid the need for costly infrastructure requirements.


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