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Green Fun Store News

Farm life gets a solar makeover

Posted by Green Fun Store on 1/11/2011 to Farm Lifestyle
Jacky King recently completed his search for a way to cut his electricity costs and lessen the environmental toll of his Michigan farm. After a little research, King decided to take advantage of the two most abundant resources on his farm - the earth and the sun - and constructed a solar panel system on his property.

Yesterday, the forty solar panels that King installed at his Harvesting Earth Farm went online; later in the week, two solar geothermal systems will also go online and will be added to his two 2,880 square-foot greenhouses. King told the Flint Journal that he is an ardent believer in solar power technologies: "The earth is the biggest solar panel in the world. I believe in solar. That's why we call this Harvesting Earth. We don't give up anything."

Moreover, King affirmed that the farm life upgrades required little initial capital as students at Kettering University used a $50,000 grant from the Ford Foundation to install the geothermal systems at his farm. While the solar panel systems will greatly reduce his electricity consumption, they will also enable King to farm more produce all year long because of the extra warmth they will bring to his greenhouses.

During the summer months, the photovoltaic systems will generate enough clean electricity to eliminate 100 percent of the farm's energy costs, King asserts. In fact, King plans to sell back excess energy to the state once the solar panels are fully churning in the sunny summer months.