The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) provided capital support to 20 New Hampshire businesses transitioning to renewable or energy efficient technologies to cut costs and reduce energy consumption this year. New Hampshire farms and small businesses received $527,000 in grants perform energy projects through USDA Rural Development’s Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).
“Energy costs remain one of the largest expenses for a rural small business,” said USDA Rural Development State Director Ted Brady. “By providing these businesses with capital, the USDA aims to incentivize small businesses and farms to invest in new technology that not only increases their profitability, but also reduces greenhouse gases, fossil fuel consumption, and increases our nation’s energy independence.”
The grants range from a $2,551 grant to FACB, LLC to install insulation in a commercial building housing the N. Stratford Post Office to a $49,999 grant to Joe Brigham, Inc. to install a solar array to offset the helicopter business’s energy costs. See the attached chart for the full list of 2016 REAP grants awarded in New Hampshire. The federal investment helped to leverage an additional $1,654,239 in public and private investment in energy projects that will create and save enough energy to power 79 homes.
Businesses from diverse economic sectors benefited from these federally supported investments in energy efficiency. Nantucket Beadboard Co. of Rochester received a grant to convert an oil-based heating system to a more energy efficient system fueled by wood dust produced by the wood product manufacturer. Tuckaway Farm, a family farm in Lee, received a grant to install a solar array system that will displace over 100% of the energy used to produce a broad range of farms products including: livestock, timber, hay, oilseeds, grains, fruits and vegetables.
USDA Rural Development is accepting energy program applications from rural businesses and agricultural producers interested in utilizing energy efficient and renewable energy technologies. Applications for renewable energy system and energy efficiency grants of $20,000 or less are due by Oct. 31, 2016. Applications for renewable energy system and energy efficiency grants of greater than $20,000 and all combination grants and guaranteed loans are due by March 31, 2017. Interested applicants should contact Ken Yearman, Energy Coordinator, at (802) 828-6070 or by email at email@example.com.
USDA, through its RD 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 $215 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 areas. For more information on Rural Development visit the New Hampshire Rural Development website (www.rd.usda.gov/nh) or contact USDA RD at (603) 223-6035.