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Farm life and solar power collide on New York organic farm

Posted by Green Fun Store on 12/27/2010 to Current News/Events of John Deere
Farm life is set to get a makeover in New York: While organic farms are known for the low environmental impact they have on the earth, Berle Farm in Hoosick Falls announced that it will further offset its greenhouse emissions through the installation of a solar panel system on its grounds.

Teaming with Alteris Renewables, Berle Farm's owners are excitedly waiting for their 7.75-kilowatt solar panel system to be installed on their organic farm at the beginning of next year. According to the farm's owners, the photovoltaic system will generate roughly 65 percent to 75 percent of the organic farm's electricity needs.

The project was funded by two grants from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Energy for America program: The former will contribute $19,500, while the latter will fund $14,750 of the initial costs of installation. In total, the farm's owners affirm that they will save $2,000 a year in energy costs.

NYSERDA's president and chief executive, Francis J. Murray Jr., asserts that New York's generous solar subsidies provide many small businesses, like Berle Farms, with the capital investment needed to get such projects off the ground: "Our incentive programs for renewable energy are helping small businesses like Berle Farm invest in expanding their operations instead of their utility bills."
 
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