USDA Rural Development State Director Patty Clark announced that 11 small businesses and agricultural producers received more than $150,000 in grants to make energy efficiency upgrades and to install renewable energy systems.
Funding is being provided through USDA Rural Development’s Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). REAP was created by the 2002 Farm Bill and was reauthorized by the 2014 Farm Bill. Eligible agricultural producers and rural small businesses may use REAP funds to make energy efficiency improvements or install renewable energy systems, including solar, wind, renewable biomass (including anaerobic digesters) and geothermal.
“With this set of REAP grants we were able to touch several different sectors of the economy including – agriculture, banking, dairy, grocery, and hospitality,” said Clark. “In rural Kansas, there are several businesses that can improve their bottom line by making energy efficiency upgrades, and we will continue to partner with rural businesses and ag producers to improve their energy efficiency.”
In Kansas, 11 projects received a total of $156,234 in REAP grants. With these 11 projects, approximately 5.4 billion British Thermal Units (BTU) are being saved or replaced, and on average the businesses are saving or replacing 53 percent of their energy needs.
Renewable Energy Projects
- Patric S. Conner
Funds will be used to install a 10.14 kilowatt photovoltaic solar system on a commercial building in Kingman.
Energy Efficient Projects
- Bar K Bar Investments, LLC
Funds will be used to convert an existing natural gas irrigation system to an electric system with a variable frequency drive.
- CBG, LLC
Funds will be used to update the existing produce, dairy, and deli cases with more energy efficient models.
- First Federal Savings & Loan
Funds will be used to replace a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning unit.
- Foster Dairy
Fort Scott, Kansas
Funds will be used to replace fans in a free stall dairy barn.
- Great Western Manufacturing Company, Inc.
Funds will be used to upgrade a compressor and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning unit in an existing manufacturing plant.
- ILS Farm Partnership
Great Bend, Kansas
Funds will be used to convert an existing diesel irrigation system to an electric system with a variable frequency drive.
- Kevin Compton
Funds will be used to replace an inefficient grain dryer.
- Prime Investment Group, LLC
Funds will be used to install a new mini-split system for heating and cooling and to replace insulation at the Stafford Motor Inn.
- Spare Acres
St. John, Kansas
Funds will be used to convert an existing diesel irrigation system to an electric system with a variable frequency drive and install a new pump.
- Strickler Holstein Farm, LLC
Funds will be used to upgrade fans, lighting and equipment at a dairy farm.
Since 2009, USDA has awarded $545 million to support more than 8,800 REAP projects nationwide. This includes $361 million in grants and loans for almost 2,900 renewable energy systems. For the remaining 5,900 projects, USDA provided $184 million to help rural small businesses and agricultural producers make energy efficiency improvements such as lighting; heating, ventilation and cooling; irrigation; insulation and motor replacements. When fully operational, these projects are estimated to generate and save 7.3 billion kilowatt hours of electricity annually – enough to power more than 660,000 homes for a year.
The next deadline for REAP funding is June 30, 2015. Additional information on the REAP program and application forms can be located on the agency’s website at: http://www.rd.usda.gov/ks
For more information on how to apply for REAP funding in Kansas, contact a USDA Rural Development Business Program Specialist below.
- Doug Bruggeman, Hays Area Office, 785-628-3081, Ext. 1435, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Katie Casper, Iola Area Office, 620-365-2901, Ext. 1427, email@example.com
- David Kramer, Topeka State Office, 785-271-2700, Ext. 2736, firstname.lastname@example.org
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, administers and manages housing, business and community infrastructure programs through a national network of state and local offices. Rural Development has an active portfolio of more than $210.5 billion in loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.