Survey Says: On-Farm Renewable Energy Production Thriving
March 23, 2011 | Robert Puro
According to a USDA survey, on-farm renewable energy production continues to grow in rural America. More than 8,500 farm operators are currently producing renewable energy using methane digesters, solar panels, and wind turbines. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack hopes the survey will encourage more operators to produce their own energy. Vilsack noted that: “The reality is there is a significant energy savings and a money savings associated with these operations. And so as farmers and ranchers and growers learn about the fact that they can save $2,500 or so on their energy bills they may be more interested in this.” An opportunity exists for farmers to both save money and make money, as on-farm electricity generated can act as both a replacement for electricity traditionally delivered from the grid and as an asset that can be sold by the farmer back to the grid. The USDA currently offers help to farm producers who want to set up on-farm renewable energy systems through its Rural Energy For America Program.
Sources: YouTube “Farms Making Their Own Energy”