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USDA Rural Development Senior Climate Policy Advisor and Nevada State Director Announce Funding for Valley Electric Association

Teja Dusanapudi
Carson City
Release Date

PAHRUMP., Nev, Nov. 9, 2023-USDA Rural Development Senior Climate Policy Advisor John McAuliff and USDA Rural Development Nevada State Director Lucas Ingvoldstad announced today that Valley Electric Association (VEA), a rural electric cooperative based in Pahrump, is receiving a $150,000 grant to advance clean energy in rural Nevada. This investment was made through the Rural Energy for America Program Technical Assistance Grant (REAP TAG). VEA will identify qualified rural applicants and support their REAP applications for the financing, improvement, or deployment of renewable energy or energy efficient equipment. These applicants will be located within Nye County, Esmeralda County, and Clark County, which are all part of Nevada’s Rural Partners Network (RPN) Community Networks.

“The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to advancing climate equity and resilience through more and better market opportunities,” said Lucas Ingvoldstad. “Rural communities deserve to garner the benefits of renewable energy, which means investing in all aspects of those communities. The Valley Electric Association is attuned to the unique energy needs of rural small businesses and agricultural producers throughout our state, and I’m confident this will provide additional opportunities to pave the way towards improved access to reliable, affordable, and clean energy across Nevada.”

Valley Electric Association will promote the use of renewable energy technologies through identifying and partnering with qualified potential applicants for USDA Rural Development’s REAP investments. VEA serves many lower income or disadvantaged communities in Nevada, who may be otherwise unserved. Potential applicants from those communities include alfalfa producers in the Fish Lake Valley area, both dealing with reduced water availability. By assisting businesses and producers crucial to the local economy to obtain funding for clean energy technology, VEA will support the growth and sustainability of rural Nevada. John McAuliff celebrated this investment while visiting Valley Electric Association today and amplifying the work the cooperative is doing to combat climate change.

The purpose of the REAP TAG program is to enable applicants to provide technical assistance to agricultural producers and rural small businesses applying to REAP, with priority for applicants assisting distressed or disadvantaged communities or using underutilized technologies or seeking grants under $20,000. To learn more, please visit the program page online: Rural Energy for America Program Technical Assistance Grant.

Additional REAP TAG funds awarded in Nevada include $150,000 to Agripower Solar (APS), going towards AgriPower Solar's proposition to assist 12 agricultural producers in rural Nevada to apply for the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) as well as support the deisign and deployment of renewable energy projects funded by those REAP applications. Without this support, many of APS' clients would struggle to focus their efforts on the day-to-day operations of their agricultural or small business while simultaneously planning their REAP applications and projects. APS would evaluate the REAP eligibility of potential clients, assist agricultural producers and rural small business clients in applying for REAP grants, design their renewable energy systems, and develop the deployment plans for those projects. APS' efforts will be primarily focused on clients who operate businesses within disadvantaged and under-represented communities. APS has supported the submission of more than 90 REAP grant applications over the last five years, and their clients have been awarded more than $2.5 million in combined REAP grants.

To learn more about investment resources for rural Nevada, visit www.rd.usda.gov/nv or contact the nearest USDA Rural Development state office.  

USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, tribal and high-poverty areas. For more information, visit www.rd.usda.gov.  

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