Farm Energy Efficiency Project
Farm Energy Efficiency Project. I’m Greg Martin as Line On Agriculture presents the Harvest Clean Energy Report.
Energy efficiency has become almost a mantra for farming operations. The more energy efficient, the better the bottom line and of course a smalleer footprint. Robert Madeja, Business Analyst with the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy and project manager of the Farm Energy Efficiency project says they are reaching out to farmers.
MADEJA: The Farm Energy Project is really looking at how do we get the right information to producers to help them look at energy as a system. As a farmer, we don’t want farmers operating a renewable energy system without having an efficient system of energy use on the farm. So this project is look at how do we get the right information to producers to access their energy use and see if they really are operating as efficiently as possible on the electric side.
Part of the project was helping farmers with their energy efficiency.
MADEJA: A big accomplishment we had this year in cooperation with the USDA and the memorandum of understanding we had signed back in 2009 in partnership with NRCS to develop a website, a tool for farmers which takes them through the process of how to first learn about energy efficiency; secondly to decide if an audit which is where we want to drive ultimately farmers to get an energy audit.
NRCS has a program to cover most of that cost.
MADEJA: And thirdly guide producers to where the incentives exist for either energy audits or for energy efficient equipment so we developed an interactive map where farmers can click on their state and see incentives. Se realize that although the website is a great tool, not all farmers are technologically savvy enough to use that so another way we’re working with farmers is through a grass roots campaign in which we’ve designated about 12 key dairy states.
Madeja says they work with all the various agencies to get farmers the needed information.
MADEJA: So we really want to help simplify that and help USDA communicate this to make these programs as effective as possible because energy is a new concern for NRCS right now which has made it a challenge to everybody on board to better understand energy use and energy in agriculture.
Visit their website at usdairy.com/saveenergy and 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.