The Beqaa Valley is a major agricultural region in Lebanon (42% of Lebanon’s cropland) which is considered semi-arid receiving 200-500 mm precipitation per year. The main crops grown in Beqaa are vegetables, field crops, orchards, and pulses. Agriculture heavily relies on fossil fuel for groundwater pumping and aquifers suffer over-abstraction. The region suffers from widespread electricity blackouts. Within the DP consists of an innovative agrivoltaics systems (Agrigen Solar Tracker) to produce energy and crops in a fully automated and controlled environment system. The system is being assessed in terms of crop production, water savings, energy production and efficiency, and reduced environmental footprint.
DP is being constructed at the AUB’s Advancing Research Enabling Communities Centre (AREC) in the Beqaa. AREC research centre includes facilities and agricultural land on an area of 100ha and acts as a hub for research and community engagement.