Tag Archives: Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE)

USDA Seeking Applications for Rural Energy For America Grants & Loans

Next Deadline: October 31, 2022 

What does this program do?
The program provides guaranteed loan financing and grant funding to agricultural producers and rural small businesses for renewable energy systems or to make energy efficiency improvements. Agricultural producers may also apply for new energy efficient equipment and new system loans for agricultural production and processing.

Who may apply for this program?

  • Agricultural producers with at least 50 percent of their gross income coming from agricultural operations.
  • Small businesses in eligible rural areas.

Learn more here: Rural Energy for America Program Renewable Energy Systems & Energy Efficiency Improvement Guaranteed Loans & Grants in Nebraska

Above Photo: In 2015 Rick and Heidi Hammond installed a 25-kilowatt photovoltaic system on their farm west of Benedict in York County, Nebraska. The project estimate at the time was $84,864; however, a USDA grant and federal tax credits reduced the cost to only $19,100, The payback was just over 6 years, which was achieved in 2021. Solar panels typically last 30 or more years.
Installers: MarLin Wind & Solar and North Star Solar Bears

Another Local Example: The Brummond Farm

Click the link, below, to access a Successful Farming story published in 2021 about the Brummond Farm near Craig, Nebraska. The installer, Graham Christensen of GC ReVOLT, offers renewable energy grants writing among the company’s services. The Solar Power Bonanza: Farmers Can Readily Tap Into The Explosive Growth In Solar Generation

Most Recent Nebraska REAP Grant Awardees

USDA Invests Nearly $800 Million in Critical Infrastructure to Combat Climate Change Across Rural America This Earth Day, USDA News Release 

In Nebraska, six recipients were awarded grants under the Rural Energy for America Program. Recipients here are: in Albion, MSJM Properties Partnership, Marilee Niewohner, and Niewohner Grandchildren’s Limited Partnership; in Boyd, Valley Foods Cooperative; in Holdrege, Spady Buick Pontiac GMC Inc.; and in Monroe, Alan G Preister. Combined, they were awarded $68,500 for projects that will save or generate 491,444 kWh per year, enough energy to power 45 homes annually. 

“I encourage Nebraskans to connect with us to find out how USDA can partner with them for their energy conservation needs. For more information, contact Jeff Carpenter, energy coordinator, at (402) 437-5554 or at NE.RBCS@usda.gov,” said Bolz. 

Information on the federal investment tax credit (currently 26%), energy audits, depreciation, NDEE loans and more can be found here: Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency – Nebraska.

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Iowa State University Research Finds Wind Farms Positively Impact Crops

By Ed Adcock, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

AMES, Iowa — Iowa State University researchers have found that wind turbines located in agricultural fields are a plus for the crops growing around them. The overall effects on crops growing in wind farms appear to be positive said Gene Takle, Iowa State agronomy professor. He has led a team of plant and soil scientists along with extension specialists who have been looking into the effects since 2009. They started their work after seeing more wind farms and turbines pop up around the state. The new land use was positive for the landowners where they were located, but the researchers wondered if it was the same for the farmers growing crops. Read more here.

Pixabay Photo: Iowa Farm

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Trump’s Solar Tariffs Go Into Effect Today. So What?

Joshua Rhodes, Contributor, Forbes

While it’s true that there is likely to be some short-term pain for solar PV installers, and the tariffs may well cost some solar PV installation jobs (currently the fast-growing job in the U.S., which could take a 23,000-job hit), this reduction is likely to be jobs that would have been created in the near future but now will not be, not layoffs of current installers.

If we look at what the tariff will add to the cost of electricity produced by new utility-scale solar PV across the U.S., it appears that, given the three factors noted [in the article], the cost will be $1-$2/MWh ($0.001-$0.002/kWh) higher than it would have been, depending on location. For residential PV, the pain will be even lower because the panels themselves make up less of the total overall cost of the entire system. Read more here.

Joshua D. Rhodes, PhD is a Research Fellow at the Energy Institute and the Webber Energy Group at the University of Texas at Austin.

Flickr Photo: Solar power in the California Desert

Currently-Available Incentives
Taking into consideration presently-available incentives such as the 30% federal solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which is also time-sensitive; the immediate depreciation of equipment allowed businesses in the new tax law; LES’s Customer-Owned Generation capacity payments: These and other incentives put solar tariffs into greater perspective, especially when evaluating the cost of solar over the long-term.

Nebraska and Iowa Databases of Incentives

ADDITIONAL RECOMMENDED READINGSUSTAINABLE BRANDS
Clean Energy Jobs Now Outnumber Coal, Gas Jobs in 30 US States

Launched in 2006, Sustainable Brands has become a global learning, collaboration, and commerce community of forward-thinking business and brand strategy, marketing, innovation and sustainability professionals who are leading the way to a better future. We recognize that brands today have a unique role to play in both focusing corporate energy and also influencing culture. We seek to enable the success of better brands that are helping shift the world to a sustainable economy by helping them embed environmental and social innovation into the DNA of their business so that sustainability becomes a core driver of business and brand value.