REAP Makes A Difference
REAP Makes A Difference. I’m Greg Martin as Line On Agriculture presents the Harvest Clean Energy Report.
Up until recently, Kowz R Us Dairy owner Dan De Kruyf knew nothing about the Renewable Energy for America or REAP program. Now he is seeing some huge benefits.
DE KRUYF: Carl Simpson from Renewable Energy Northwest LLC, he approached us. The Dairy industry hasn’t been that profitable so we weren’t really interested kind of until he told us that there was quite a bit of financial assistance out there in the form of grants to offset most of the cost of the project so in the long run we’re glad he did because clearly it’s saving us a bunch of propane.
Dairy operations use very hot water to sanitize tanks and in DeKruyf’s situation they were using a lot of propane to heat that water.
DE KRUYF: The old system, we had two 100 gallon propane fired water heaters and the 325 gallon concrete lined storage tanks so we had the ability to heat 525 gallons of water to 165-170 degrees. But propane water heaters are only 60% efficient so the other 40% is going out the exhaust. Now that we have the solar system in place, it’s 30 panels. There are 20 tubes in each panel and it is capable of heating 1000 gallons of water per day from well temp which is about 55 degrees up to 165 degrees which is where we need it.
They maintain one propane unit for when sunshine is not plentiful and at night. The solar unit is 99 to 100% efficient. DeKruyf says if it wasn’t for the REAP program they would never had made the change.
DE KRUYF: Not only would we have not done it without it being there, I didn’t even know what the REAP program was. We’re very appreciative of the fact that they subsidized 25 to 30% of the cost of this solar project which made it possible for us.
And they are not done. They are getting ready to replace lights at the dairy operation.
DE KRUYF: We’ve applied for another REAP grant for LED lights and metal halide lights in our barn and in our shop. Our electrician thinks that if we just eliminate the 4-400 watt lights we have in our parlor right now with the T-5’s he figures we’ll save probably between $150 and $200 a month just in our power bill.
For additional information on clean energy, visit harvestcleanenergy.org. That’s today’s Line On Agriculture. I’m Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network.???www.harvestcleanenergy.org